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FLEXO Magazine : January 2012
company. PPI also reclaims and re- uses 70 percent of its print solvents by processing them through an in-house solvent recovery system. Forerunners oF FIrsT At PPI, responsibility to the environ- ment and technological progress is not the only commitment. The company is also extremely dedicated to its employ- ees, as they share in an employee stock ownership plan (ESOP). This means the employees have a vested interest in the viability, as well as the profitability, of the company. “ Our people are our greatest strength,” says Gloria Costin, human resource manager. And this strength is reinforced through training and educa- tion—to keep PPI’s associates ahead of the curve, comfortable with change and ready for growth. In an effort to become one of the best flexographic printers in the country, PPI was one of the first companies to imple- ment the FIRST (Flexographic Image Reproduction Specifications and Toler- ances) Operator Certification program. The initial class was made up of more than 50 people including, all prepress operators, press operators, operator trainees and shift leaders. And starting in January, 36 more associates will be starting their FIRST Training—the big- gest recommendation for the program possible. Employees that complete the program claimed it to be a rousing success; despite some trepidation in “ going back to school.” “ In the beginning there was some apprehension,” says William Jenkins, production team leader. “ But once we got into the training, reactions were very positive. ” And why are reactions so positive? “ Because the staff appreciates the time, effort and financial commitment PPI has taken,” explains Bryant. “ They recognize the fact that we are doing this to raise the level of services and prod- ucts we can offer our present customers and gives us the ability to approach new customers and markets.” PPI has been implementing the FIRST practices book since initial publication of the FTA manual. The Virtual Campus training reinforces this resource. “ With the training we are now able to take this information through our operation and reference back for clarification,” Bryant says. “Some of our prepress associates, who are more familiar with the book, even used it as a resources during the Campus Training.” But, the biggest question is, has FIRST training helped staff prepare for the wave of new technology? Bryant believes so, “Our associates are more technically sound and under- stand the need to follow the processes in order to get the desired results. We have seen marked improvement in the consistency and repeatability of our process print orders. ” THe BoTToM LIne While technological improvements are important in today ’s economy, the potential of this equipment can only be extracted by those who operate it. With- out smart, dedicated and well-trained www.flexography.org january 2012 FLEXO 21 Improve your balance at any speed 3MTM Flexographic Plate Mount- ing Systems give you flexibility - a choice of adhesives, foams and thickness to better balance solids and dots to meet increasingly higher customer expectations. Air-release EASY Mount Adhesive provides faster set-up and smoother surfaces for improved productivity and print quality - at any speed. Best of all, 3MTM Flexographic Plate Mounting Systems are brought to you by Anderson & Vreeland, with 50 years of flexo experience. Tip the balance in your favor. get social theDiff erence! Experienc e 866.282.7697 fx: 800.223.6869 www.AndVre.com info@AndVre.com Download free Selection Guide at www.AndVre.com/3m_mounting.html AV 9634.5 3m stones ad.indd 1 12/9/11 8:10:19 AM