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Ratio of Prepress Employees to Sales

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  • Ratio of Prepress Employees to Sales

    I was wondering if there are any prepress managers out there that are being requested to reduce personnel due to "ratio of employees to sales" and if so what size shop are you in and how many prepress employees are there? Also, please be specific on what their duties entail...operators, imposition operators, quality control personnel.

    5.5 operators
    3 quality control personnel

    Company produces $24 mil a year

  • #2
    Re: Ratio of Prepress Employees to Sales

    It sounds like you're given a choice which body part you would like to remove.

    Some people love fomulas that make no common sense.

    " to industry average film spoilage vs $$ in sales, we're high." I remember that one thrown at me.

    Questions to consider:

    What kind of work is brought in?
    On the average, how much of it is needing to be reworked, additional file prep, etc.? (Final printer spread, trapped PDF compared to finished Quark file and you have to resize and place the images.).
    Are you already working overtime?
    How much idle time between jobs? None to 2-3 hours
    Sheet-fed vs web? 24 million dollars is a lot, but the bottomline would be generally more prepress work per $1,000 dollar sales in sheet-fed.

    The best recommendation I have is to talk to them returning with, "If necessary, we can cut back hours to 32 when we're slow. Each shift can go to 6 hours per day."

    This will give your employees time to reconsider what they have to do and if they want to continue working there. One will leave, hopefully, not the key employee. It will also allow you to keep all of the employees without having to go back and forth retraining and the cycle of foolish errors. Personal experience, the slow periods would only last from 1 day to the longest, 2 weeks, unless there's a loss of accounts.


    • #3
      Re: Ratio of Prepress Employees to Sales


      I am sure there is no special ratio but you have to consider your prepress as a cost factor that is in relation to sales or income.
      Do yourself a favor and find out your complete prepress costs inclusive the amount your company pays for the area you occupy, the machineries, computers and software with write-off factors, your staff inclusive holidays, telephone-fax-email costs, and so on.
      You will be surprised of the result and you will try to reduce these costs by yourself.



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