Market Watch

When speed matters

Today, the speed of print and digital communications production can be a differentiating factor for service providers and corporate communications stakeholders.  For example, when you have a large number of documents to print, you need to be fast. You’re expecting your printing facility to be reliable and efficient. But what happens if you reach full capacity and can’t deliver the expected performance? Is it necessary to invest in new equipment or is there a way to extend its capacity?

It is obvious that organizations do not want to overspend on systems when it is not needed. They first have to identify what causes the slowing down and how to fix it. They also have to be aware of their real needs in printing performances. So a balance of value and scalability in licenses and systems is preferable, to ensure investment is in line with the benefits whether the business grows or not.

To achieve that, it is important that there is a clear understanding of the various components that contribute to the overall speed. We call it throughput speed, in other words, the rate at which the job is processed and the final output is created. In a document production environment for example, many things can influence the throughput speed:

  • Hardware, network and other related systems’ properties (e.g. the number of processors and cores, the amount of RAM, network bandwidth, database location)
  • Software capacity (e.g. output speed limit through licensing)
  • Type and size of input data (e.g. XML)
  • Document template and workflow complexity
  • Output format being produced

Focus on output speed is not enough

When these many factors come into play, it becomes challenging to accurately determine how fast the production is, because speed is also impacted by processes taking place before anything even reaches the output pipeline.

Taking a more holistic look at the whole job creation process, by evaluating throughput speed and not just output speed allows to find areas of improvement and possible ways to increase the overall performance by tweaking the elements contributing to it.

What are your options to increase throughput speed?

When your needs start to outgrow the performance of your facility, the important first step is to identify where bottlenecks occur and where you need to scale-up. Is it the hardware’s computing power or system capacity that can’t keep up? Is it the type of document produced that causes the slow down? Or the demand is exceedingly high and you need to adjust your software’s licensing?

  • Scale-up the hardware. If the hardware resources are inadequate as the load increases but the software resources are sufficient, then the hardware becomes a bottleneck.
  • Increase output speed limit of your software. Objectif Lune offers the option of Performance Packs when a higher output speed is required. Depending on the product, a Performance Pack increases the maximum output speed and/or the number of jobs that can be processed in parallel.
  • Optimize the way the software is used. Creating templates in an optimized fashion and the way automated processes are built, can have an enormous effect. The knowledge of a specialist can be a powerful ally.

Visit us to find out how Objectif Lune could help you optimizing the throughput speed of your facilities!

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