LET ME TELL YOU ABOUT US:
I work for a leading provider of print and output solutions for business customers, ranging from small business to large enterprises. Full company background here: http://tinyurl.com/lcvehq
For the context of this project, the products we are dealing with manage the print and output of variable data communications credit card statements, utility bills, direct mail, etc. These documents have a lot of variable data and contain personal information. Therefore they must be printed and mailed in a highly controlled environment to ensure efficiency and integrity.
Our software to manage the production process is called InfoPrint ProcessDirector (IPPD). It is server-based software that is sold to businesses who print a lot of variable data communications, as noted above. IPPD is modular software base software that may be added onto as business needs change. This allows businesses to buy what they need and expand later by purchasing related plug-ins.
HERE IS WHAT WE NEED:
A well designed illustration that effectively communicates IPPDs modular infrastructure and plug-in capabilities. Our current illustration may help show you how it works, however it is overcomplicated and needs simplification so we would like to be less literal and more conceptual about the plug-in capabilities. It may be seen on the PDF of the product data sheet here: http://tinyurl.com/kstxok
The illustration would be used in print and online. An online version might have clickable elements that would direct the viewer to more detail. 4 color build, vector format.
OUR TARGET AUDIENCE IS:
Companies who print and mail highly variable communication pieces (statements and financial-related direct mail). Most often in IT or Operations, the people viewing this have a strong understanding of print and mail operations, and how data gets transferred from its source, composed, printed, inserted and mailed. Their concerns are efficiency and integrity.
WE ABSOLUTELY MUST HAVE (or we don't want to see) THIS IN OUR DESIGN:
Appearance: simply communicated & professional. Feel should be mature-tech (as opposed to startup), forward thinking, but not radical. Base element needs to be IPPD. Plugin elements are more conceptual than the old diagram. Icons would be ideal, but they might need to be footnoted with the content in quotes.
- composition software this is specialized design software that allows for highly variable documents to be produced
- mail preparation this is the process that an address must go through in order to be ready to mail. The address is examined, standardized against a database, corrected and sent back to the system. Also includes placing important barcodes on each envelope.
- printer management this is the process of controlling the printer and actually printing. These are big printers. See this datasheet http://tinyurl.com/mrfks9 for a picture
- inserter monitoring this monitors every piece of mail that goes into an envelope by a high speed machine called an inserter. These are big. Heres a picture: http://tinyurl.com/nkhxm7
- audit reporting this is a reporting process that allows customers to review statistics about each document as it progresses through the production process. It is important as proof for regulatory compliance, as well as being able to bill their customers
- transforms these plugins allow conversion of different input/output data. i.e. PDF to AFP or Metacode to AFP.
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