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FLEXO Magazine : September 2011
FTA TODAY Best Label Sets Precedent, Attains FIRST Company Certification Process Controls, Promote Consistent, Repeatable Results By Mike Salerno Something is different at Best Label Inc. Employees are engaged. The plant has been reorganized. Processes are streamlined. Jobs seem to flow effortlessly through the press. By and large staff members are crediting their near-universal participation in FTA’s Flexographic Image Reproduction Specifications & Tolerances (FIRST) Certification programs with driving the business improvements. Their experience, roughly two years in the making, culmi- nated on August 9 when the company passed the final audit in FTA’s FIRST Company Certification program and set yet another precedent. That day it became the first business to be FIRST Company Certified, and the celebration was on. For John Crammer, Travis Gilkey, Justin Moss, Larry Her- nandez, Dan Crammer, David Duncan and the rest of Union City, CA-based Best Label staff, the day they had all worked for was here. But they had already started to reap the benefits long before Summer 2011. Customers had noticed a stark difference in their products, procedures and skilled personnel and many were talking about it. John Crammer, Best’s general manager explained, “The success of our company is demonstrative of the quality of the FIRST Certification program. Certification, in and of itself sends a message to our existing customers, future clients and our competition. At the end of the day, with FIRST Company Certifi- cation in hand, we plan to really take the ball and run with it.” From Crammer’s viewpoint, the complete FIRST Certifica- tion program (Press Operator, Prepress Operator, Implemen- tation Specialist and Company) encourages its participants to continue learning about an ever-changing industry. Stay- ing ahead of the curve, while applying best practices and standardized procedures, allows companies to continue their education and build stronger skills on the part of the staff. Best Label has mapped out its workflow to identify key com- ponents, including both devices and equipment which are fingerprinted and optimized to FIRST specifications. EFFICIENCY BREEDS CONSISTENCY • FIRST certification is all about establishing consisten- cy. The goal is to attain the same high level of quality each time. Printing to the numbers and standardizing the way companies do business are the objectives. • The backbone of company certification is individual certification. • Best Label employees bought into the long process and realized that they were learning how to do their job better, quicker and more eco-friendly than ever. • FIRST Certification carries credibility. The print indus- try is looking for print partners that stand out from their competitors. Best Label pressroom is organized to optimize workflow and speed print jobs through the plant. 14 FLEXO SePteMBeR 2011 www.flexography.org