Mailing Systems Technology - May/June 2009 - (Page 24)

feature The Key Justifying that upgrade By Scott Watson and Jim Gray This is the age of “nickels and dimes, the driving force behind ” what companies are having to do to survive. Cutting costs and saving money at every turn has never been more of an enterprisewide policy, and don’t expect it to end anytime soon. As your organization’s mail center manager, a great deal is expected of you as a contributor to this business philosophy. More difficult still is the question of how you are expected to convince upper management that now is the time to take action on upgrading mail processing in order to better prepare your company for the demands it will surely face as the business climate improves and competition gets tougher. It has never been more important for upper management to understand the impact its mailing operations are having on the company’s bottom line, especially given the decisions it must make regarding budget cutbacks and doing more with less. It is obvious that mail processing is no longer just, well… mail processing. Today, it’s document generation and consolidation; accurate monitoring and tracking; high-speed processing; cost-effective packaging; and keeping informed of ever-changing USPS regulations and requirements. And that makes you — your company’s mail stream gatekeeper — an integral component of what needs to be a well-oiled machine. It also means your role will never be the same. In many ways, a mail center manager in 2009 needs to be a combination of a technology guru, postal savings monitor, quality control supervisor and security specialist, as well as a resident expert in mailpiece design and in leveraging postal programs. And let’s not forget document generation. Today’s mail stream now begins whenever and wherever an external-bound document is 24 MAY - JUNE 2009 a TO APPROVAL generated, be it an invoice, statement, report or direct marketing piece. So asking for a little help is no sign of weakness. Evaluate, Identify, Implement So let’s talk mailflow — efficient, value-added, cost-saving mailflow — and what a mail center manager must do to convince upper management of the most cost-effective way to ensure its implementation. Today it’s all about investment and ROI. Organizations need to be persuaded that every man-hour committed and every dollar spent will result in a productivity gain and cost savings, ideally both short- and long-term. Many companies commit valuable dollars to their mail centers. Unfortunately, for the most part, these “investments” often only maintain the existing infrastructure, spending additional time and money continuing the status quo. Worse, it is especially counterproductive during difficult business cycles and will actually end up costing you more than if you had invested in the right upgrades to your mailing operations. To make your case to management for taking mail processing to the next level, today’s mail center manager needs the “inside information” about the entire mail stream process — what works, what doesn’t work and what’s available and most cost-effective to make it work. Step #1 — Evaluation Organizations that truly want to convert today’s postal changes into positive mail stream efficiencies, especially during tight economic times, should consider adopting a fundamental principle that we call mailflow optimization (MFO). Mailflow optimization is a systematic approach to evaluating and providing solutions for the entire mailflow process, solutions that virtually guarantee dramatic efficiencies

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Mailing Systems Technology - May/June 2009

Mailing Systems Technology - May/June 2009
Editor’s Note
Real Life Management
Software Byte
Employing Technology
Everything IMB
Ship It
Best Practices
What You Think
From the Source
The Key to Approval
Practical Insights
Mail.XML and Services Oriented Architecture (SOA)
Implementing the Intelligent Mail Barcode
Internet-Powered Postal Mail
Using Personalization Technology
Reality Check
Pushing the Envelope

Mailing Systems Technology - May/June 2009