Binary Graphics, Inc.

Create a Winning Disk Input Form For Your Shop

by John Knapp, Binary Graphics, Inc. Seattle
© 1997 Binary Graphics, Inc. All rights reserved worldwide.

The disk input form everybody's favorite! Printers usually create theirs by looking at 20 others and kind of combining them. They're all basically the same: Asking what's your name; what programs and fonts did you use; what's the file called. Good information but the important questions go un-asked and un-answered.

I have long promoted using the disk input form as a medium to gather more information about the job. Information to help establish what has been done to the files and what is left to be done by the plant. Information to quantify the complexity of the job. It need not be difficult for your customers to fill out.

Specifically, consider the following questions to ask your customers on the form:

  • Is the job complete or are we waiting for something
  • Number of pages pre-trapped and by how much
  • Number of pages to trap
  • Have all elements been colored in all files
  • How many pages need to have items colored by the plant
  • How many high-res photos of what size
  • Have varnish windows been created and how have they been created
  • How many pages need varnish and how complex are they
  • How many scans to do and how are they going to be positioned (and by whom)

Perhaps you would have room for some check boxes to verify other things:

  • Have the links been verified
  • Is there image editing needed
  • Is there file preparation needed
  • Is the bleed built into the files

I hope this gives you a few ideas. If you have any other ideas not covered here I would like to hear about them.



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