Complete Design & Packaging chooses Esko Automation Engine for supply chain synergy

Complete Design & Packaging reaches new heights of productivity using Esko Automation Engine to automate workflow processes

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The Customer

Complete Design & Packaging, North Carolina, USA

Complete Design & Packaging (CDP) is a leading full-service packaging provider, working from ideation and design to manufacturing, assembly and distribution to create a high quality product for its customers. The corrugated sheet plant leadership team, President Howard Bertram and Vice President Scott Sumner, have always sought to invest in digital finishing technology that brings value to the supply chain and delivers performance.

CDP operates from a 120,000 sq ft facility in Concord, North Carolina, with a reputation for professionalism and consistent high-quality output. CDP has previously made significant process investments, including Esko ArtiosCAD structural packaging design software, allowing CDP to provide superior samples and professional quotes.

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Testimonial

Bertram and Sumner were keen to embrace change and industry technology developments

Howard Bertram, President, Complete Design & Packaging

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The challenge

Restoring the balance between hardware and software

CDP built production workflows with a variety of traditional corrugated equipment that allowed it to offer a full range of services from prepress to fulfilment and warehousing for its customers. The company’s ever-evolving collection includes single and multi-pass digital technology, die-cutters, gluers, a labelling unit and multiple flexo presses.

Aiming to build on their existing success and expand production capabilities, Bertram and Sumner were keen to embrace change and industry technology developments, in order to advance the corporate mission of professionalism and quality in everything CDP does.

CDP became the first business in North America to invest in an EFI-Nozomi C18000 single pass digital press. The six-color, 71-inch-wide machine has the ability to print up to 246 linear feet per minute. While it solves many production issues, it also creates the need for CDP to invest in additional converting and finishing equipment.

After discussing the situation with an Esko representative, CDP added a Kongsberg C64 digital finishing table to their impressive inventory. The Kongsberg C table is a multi-format digital finishing hardware designed to exceed standards in versatility, precision and productivity. The Kongsberg C64 is a proven solution for short-term print runs that are cost-prohibitive to produce with traditional die cutters.

Bertram said: “The table was so fast; we were trying to find work for us to do to keep up with it. I’d put a job on it and before I knew it, it was done. I found myself searching for things to cut to keep the table running – it was that fast.”

The additional production potential unlocked workflow efficiency gains, but the process had become unbalanced, creating a need for further enhancement of prepress capabilities.

Testimonial

With Automation Engine, converters were able to grow production capacity without increasing headcount

Howard Bertram, President, Complete Design & Packaging

The solution

Prepress software technology that matches quality with efficiency

After investing in hardware that handled complex print runs with quality and consistency, CDP concluded that to rebalance the process, it would need to invest in either additional staff or workflow automation software. It was determined that peak productivity could be achieved by adding new technology to the company’s assembly of tools.

“Most corrugated companies don’t handle prepress in-house, rather they rely on their flexo print plate suppliers,” noted Bertram. “Short-run production is changing this tradition. We decided to invest in Esko Automation Engine to handle this new and growing need.”

Esko Automation Engine set a new standard for prepress workflow, automating prepress tasks, speeding up the processes, reducing errors and minimizing the need for operator intervention. With Automation Engine, converters are able to grow production capacity without increasing headcount. Equipment efficiency and productivity is boosted and the intuitive nature of the technology ensures that the software is efficient for users of all skill levels.

Automation Engine was able to handle the volume of file preparation that was necessary to keep machines productive at CDP due to its ability to automate the workflow and compatibility with both flexo and digital finishing, which ensured the company could always meet customer delivery dates.

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Testimonial

Most corrugated companies don’t handle prepress in-house. Short-run production is changing this tradition, we invested in Esko Automation Engine to handle this new and growing need.

Howard Bertram, President, Complete Design & Packaging

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The benefits

Improving industry standards by adopting technology

With the right combination of leading hardware and software, CDP was able to digitize its products - including cutting size templates and automated cutting size calculations - automate repetitive prepress tasks and standardize workflow resulting in a faster, more efficient way of working and a reduction in administrative prepress errors. CDP’s commitment to improving industry standards through the adoption of new technology became apparent after their successful partnership with Esko.

“The past year-and-a-half has housed some major changes for CDP. Between adding the Nozomi and Esko table, to soon installing a Vutek, we’ve really been kept on our toes! It’s put a spotlight on us as well, which is exciting. But on the same token, it also allows us to see where we still have room to grow,” said Bertram.

Digital transformation of the business, and increased sophistication by means of workflow and production automation, is the direction the industry is moving into and CDP plans to keep its brand promise aligned with the leading trends.

To find out more about how Esko can support your digital business transformation, as we do for thousands of packaging converters around the world, please visit esko.com

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