The Big Picture - April 2012 - (Page 24)

Business & Management Software Too many companies invest in an array of tools for the production side of their business, but then neglect doing the same for the business and management end of things. The argument for not doing so typically seems to be: “Most of it is common sense,” coupled with, “We’ve been doing it this way for years,” or the alternative, “Usually, I just write up the estimate on a napkin from this morning’s McDonald’s sack.” In fact, modern business and management software can help you do a much better job of putting in place systems, tools, and strategies that can help you be more e ective when it comes to: costing and estimating, monitoring inventory, creating schedules and tracking jobs, automating shipping and fulfi llment of jobs, 24 THE BIG PICTURE APRIL 2012 More than 40 front-end solutions for bettering your company’s bottom line. and much more. As a result, you’ll not only be more e cient – you’ll likely be more profitable, as you identify up-front any potential problems and bottlenecks. And the back end of a job will similarly be free of any troublesome hitches. In our annual look at businessmanagement software, we’ve strived to focus on tools or components that are primarily geared toward print providers (not generic business software); nor are we including software that’s primarily focused upon proofing, PDF, asset management, or variable data or software that’s primarily designed for publication and/or package printing or RIP production. We have, however, included information on a few print-management tools – software that is not a RIP but does address production or workflow e ciencies (see sidebar, page 27). Activity Software Activity Advantage, created specifically for the signage and graphics industries, allows users to create estimates and work orders; manage inventory, vendors, and ordering information; track jobs; generate accounting and production reports; market to customers; export to Quickbooks; and track customer contacts and notes. Also included are job-profit reports, automatic inventory updates, surcharge capability, and ability to use Art Approval and Estimates online. Its Shop Floor component tracks jobs through production, creates time and productivity reports, and schedules jobs.

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of The Big Picture - April 2012

The Big Picture - April 2012
Wide Angle
Up Front
Graphics on the Go
Business + Management
Ignite with White
Business & Management Software
Cutting Corners
Job Log

The Big Picture - April 2012