DSN Artwork Prepress is a global provider of artwork and prepress services headquartered in Antwerp, Belgium. With more than 100 years of experience, DSN works predominantly in the fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) and retail industries. Currently, DSN operates from 3 offices and is active in over 70 countries across 3 continents. DSN manages many major brands including Mars, Danone and Unilever. Find out more at http://ds-n.com/
Processing brand owner labels and pre-press files for the FMCG industry is indeed as the name describes: fast-moving. You have to be on your toes to understand the needs and concerns of brand owners, and DSN has mastered this. They have a long-standing reputation as one of the biggest players in pre-media. Knowing that a good reputation can’t be maintained if it’s only based on past performance, DSN built its reputation on its readiness for the future – in an industry that has become increasingly competitive and globalized.
Using text verification software was not a new concept for DSN, as they had been using a tool for more than 10 years. However, the industry had changed and their current solution was no longer meeting current needs. DSN’s customers demanded more, and DSN needed more flexibility in their output and on-time deliveries, particularly in their Quality Control Department. Quality control had become a bottleneck and so the search began for a new tool to increase efficiency.
This new tool would need to address three immediate challenges that their current tool was not.
Comprehensive language comparison: DSN’s main destination market is the European Union, where labels invariably include multiple languages. International travel kits, for example, contain as many as 16 different languages. The company also produces materials for Switzerland, India, South Africa, Israel and several Arabic countries. Texts in all languages must be compared, including those written from right-to-left. Comparing right-to-left languages presented a special challenge – especially since it was currently being checked manually, a tedious process that is error-prone and time-consuming.
Maintain document integrity: DSN was using a text verification solution that required native RTF & XML files be converted to PDF before they could be compared. Converting a document’s format can lead to loss of data integrity, something DSN experienced firsthand. After converting an original document to do a PDF to PDF comparison, a forward slash ( / ) was not added to the product description in the artwork file, as it should have been. Since the converted source document was missing this symbol, it therefore was not in the updated document. The result? There was no way to identify the mistake, so the document—with the missing symbol from the original document—went to print. Clearly, comparing RTF, XML, AI and PDF without converting was non-negotiable. If a slash can be missed, so too can other elements, and a minor error can then become a major recall.
Strong table comparison: Nutritional tables are a crucial part of the legally required text for food packaging: each package must contain a nutritional table. A software solution that could compare rich text format files including tables was essential.
Choosing TVT (Text Verification Tool®)
Koen Bats, Senior DTP, at DSN was managing the project. When he discovered TVT, he requested a free trial. During the trial phase, TVT was tested to see how it handled right-to-left languages, multilingual packaging, artwork, tables and all the typical file formats they used. TVT quickly handled all files and identified deviations that the other software did not. “The speed at which TVT completed the comparison was faster than anything else we had used in the past,” said Mr. Bats. He explained that other software offered options comparable to those in TVT, however compared to TVT “they were too time-consuming to use and often too complex. TVT is a lot more flexible.”
For DSN, choosing a tool to better automate a vital part of their business was essential, but it was equally important to find a partner that could share their “Future-Proof” outlook. “Our company has been driving many improvements to increase efficiency and save time in workflows. Our business is in continuous improvement and we must work with [software] partners we can rely on for future ideas,” stated Robert de Waard, Account Manager at DSN. “Schlafender Hase® is also looking for opportunities to improve. This mindset, this business culture, is important to us. We want to work with a partner who is open to future situations and is flexible.” The belief that a company’s success is based on the success of its customers is something DSN shares with Schlafender Hase.
DSN delivers approximately 4,000 jobs a year for one of their most important customers, and although the complexity of each job varies, DSN is confident that TVT will improve the overall quality of their proofreading process, especially when it comes to saving time. Compared to their previous software tool, TVT will save between five to ten minutes on a single job. All told, this adds up to an annual savings of between 300 – 600 hours.
To learn more about DSN, please visit: http://ds-n.com