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Pitney Bowes impresses Swiss Post Solutions

Swiss Post Solutions is increasing its productivity and lowering its costs thanks to an IntelliJet 20™ roll-fed digital printing system from Pitney Bowes.

Client profile

A division of Swiss Post headquartered in Zurich and Bern

6800 employees around the world

A leading provider of outsourcing solutions for paper-based business processes and innovative services in document management

The division supports business clients in industries including insurance, banking, energy supply and telecommunications.

Business Goals

Achieve an overall increase in productivity by installing modern, high-performance systems

Reduce the number of machines

Ahieve an overall improvement in processing quality with fewer reprints

Benefits

Quality, reliability and legal compliance

Increased productivity

Decreased proportion of required reprints 

Technology used

IntelliJet print solutions

Use digital colour inkjet production printing systems like IntelliJet to print high-volume targeted mail for multi-channel engagement.

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Mailstream Productivity Series inserting systems

Get more value in a single flexible platform that can easily manage a broad range of jobs and drive growth in your business. This high-performance inserting solution can process mail at up to 26,000 pieces per hour.

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Overview

"We knew from our collaboration with Pitney Bowes on our existing systems that we had found a reliable partner whose employees provide in-depth expertise with regard to sales and service." Pascal Hilpert,
Head of the Dettingen location and member of the executive board
Swiss Post Solutions

Swiss Post Solutions (SPS), a division of Swiss Post, is increasing its productivity and lowering its costs thanks to an IntelliJet 20™ roll-fed digital printing system and a second Mailstream Productivity Series™ inserting system from Pitney Bowes. Although Pitney Bowes hardware, such as the Olympus sorting solution and the FX inserting system, is already in use at various locations within the company, the current project in the Swabian town of Dettingen, Germany brings a new dimension to this collaboration.

The company is the key player in the Swiss market for specialised mail and document management. Their investment in new technology represents a major commitment to their business.

The Dettingen location is where SPS performs document output management transactions for German clients. SPS assumes responsibility for the entire document management process and consults with other companies on best practices on personalised documents created according to specific customer requirements.

SPS covers a multitude of services in this respect. In addition to producing and sending transactional documents and hybrid mail, the division also processes data, formats the documents and provides presorting. SPS also provides printon-demand solutions for customerinitiated dialogue.
 

Business Need

In addition to the services described above, Dettingen also serves as a back-up for comparable printing centres in Switzerland. SPS prints around 1.3 billion pages and inserts around 400 million items of post every year at the three production centres in Germany and Switzerland — Dettingen alone is responsible for processing approximately half of this volume. In order to simplify the production processes for printing and inserting, the company was looking for a partner that could provide and install high-performance systems able to process this kind of volume and that could seamlessly integrate these systems into the existing operations.

"For the strategically important Document Output division, we were looking for a partner that we could work with to increase productivity and lower costs", says Pascal Hilpert, Head of the Dettingen location and member of the executive board. It did not take long for the company to find Pitney Bowes and a clear objective was formulated — to achieve an overall increase in productivity by means of modern, high-performance systems, to reduce the number of machines and to achieve an overall improvement in processing quality with fewer reprints. 

"We knew from our collaboration with Pitney Bowes on our existing systems that we had found a reliable partner whose employees provide in-depth expertise with regard to sales and service and use pragmatic, sometimes unconventional, solutions to address any problems that arise", says Pascal Hilpert. "Our previous history with the company certainly helped us in the initial phases, but the dimensions of the current collaboration are completely different", adds Thomas Rohs, Director of Strategic Accounts at Pitney Bowes, emphasising that "It was clear that our systems could easily achieve the performance values specified by SPS. However, with these kinds of projects, the actual challenge can often be found elsewhere. In particular, integrating the new printing and inserting solutions into the existing system landscape can be very problematic, as every company has its own output management processes. The software connection is therefore the most crucial aspect." 

This software connection must be guaranteed by means of interfaces that are highly stable in order to virtually rule out production downtime from the outset. The software should also be configured such that it can really add intelligence to a printing or inserting system and thereby also give the customer the opportunity to exploit the added value provided by such a system: For example, whether items of post can be printed in a customised manner or if the sender can actually record and show, down to the individual page, which recipient has received which documents via which dispatch route. These possibilities are especially important for SPS and their international markets due to substantially increased requirements with regard to internal and external audits.
 

Solution

'Quality, reliability and legal compliance are the top priorities and the customer is also willing to invest the required amount to ensure that these values are maintained', explains Thomas Rohs. 'In this respect, the introduction of Pitney Bowes Direct Connect software for file-based inserting with integrity verification at sheet level was a logical step.' This was implemented seamlessly with no problems, as was the printing software package: IntelliJet Print Process Manager and the Colour Management Tool. This resulted in success for both parties from the outset: Pitney Bowes, and therefore also SPS, not only achieved their goals, but exceeded them, as demonstrated by the following example: At the start of each month, SPS processes a large print order, which was previously performed on three systems over five days in a three-shift operation. Using an MPS inserting system from Pitney Bowes, SPS now completes the same job in just four days in a three-shift operation. In addition, the proportion of reprints required decreased from 2.4% to 0.3%.

Benefits

“The alignment of operational procedures and requirements has made life somewhat easier for us here. What's more, we have also found that there is an extremely constructive and solution-oriented working atmosphere throughout the course of the project”, emphasises Thomas Rohs. It is important that this is still the case now the majority of the work has been completed, i.e. when the employees are working with the new systems. Training should focus not only on providing employees with technical expertise, but also sometimes on eliminating any concerns they may have and motivating them to engage with the new technology. “In this respect as well, the experienced staff at Pitney Bowes have done some fantastic work”, says Pascal Hilpert.
 

Mutual trust, expertise and a collaborative working style have paid off for both parties: The first Mailstream Productivity Series system performed 50 million insertions in the first year alone, while the two systems reached the 100 million mark the following year — and this number is only set to increase. For this reason, SPS has already installed another MPS unit.