15551 South US Hwy 27Lansing, MI 48906
P 517.372.6910 • F 517.372.0322

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May 09

Press Operators Wanted

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Interested in joining a growing production team?

Spartan Printing is now hiring press operators to join our growing company. We are rapidly expanding and have multiple openings.
We have multiple openings in our hi-tech pressroom, 2nd shift only 9pm to 7am.
Minimum of 2 years of high quality multicolor press experience a MUST.

Equipment:

12 x 18 Heidelberg Printmaster QM 46, 2 color
20.5 X 29.5 Heidelberg Speedmaster SM 74, 2 color 1/1 Perfector
23.5 X 29 Heidelberg Speedmaster CD 74, 8 color 4/4 Perfector with coating tower and CIP-3 Data Transfer
Features:

23.5 x 29 inch sheet – New size for wider variety of jobs
Autoplate – Plate loading in 45 seconds!
Auto Blanket Washup – Complete wash-ups in 2 minutes
Auto Impression Washup – Complete wash-ups in 2 minutes
Aqueous Coating Tower – Improves quality of paper stocks and turn-around time of jobs
15,000 impressions per hour – Only press to run 15K in Straight or Perfecting mode
PrePress Interface – Only technology of this kind in the area
CP 2000 Console – Most efficient operator interface on the market, integrated with prepress, job storage, repeatability of jobs second to none, 80% less paper waste during makeready
Inkline dispensing system – Only technology of this kind in the area
Ink roller coolers – Ink viscosity remains constant throughout the run
Streamfeeder – Wider variety of stocks

Since 1970, we have dedicated ourselves to helping our clients achieve their goals. While we have invested heavily in the latest technology, we are careful to remember that our reputation as a client-centered company can not be compromised.

Job Type: Full-time

Required experience:

Minimum of 2 years of high quality multicolor press experience a MUST.: 2 years
Required education:

High school or equivalent

Email resumes to colleen@printspartan.com or call 517.372.6910 for more information.

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May 09

Bindery Workers Wanted

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  • Job Description

Spartan Printing is growing and we would like you to grow with us, if your looking for an opportunity to be a part of an established leading organization. Spartan Printing has an exciting opportunity for a Production Equipment Operator to join our company! In this role, you will be responsible for operating various equipment and completing general maintenance functions on this equipment. Printing or production experience preferred. This is a 2nd shift position 9pm to 7am.

What will you do?

Bindery/Cutting

• Perform basic maintenance functions: belts, fuses, lubrication, bearings, adjustments, etc.

• Provide assistance as need in general training of line workers

• Comply with all in house procedures.

• Meet or exceed all rate expectations.

• Measure paper per job specifications.

• Prepare set-ups on cutting equipment per job specifications for new or existing programs

• Operate the jogging table.

• Operate a pallet mover.

• Use floor hoists.

• Change blade and handle equipment maintenance as necessary.

 

Skills & Requirements

What is required?

EDUCATION and/or EXPERIENCE:

• High school education or equivalent
• 1 – 4 years’ experience with bindery equipment preferred
• Knowledge of cutting equipment
• Knowledge of printing industry and/or production environment preferred.

What skills does it take to be successful as an Operator?

COMMUNICATION: Ability to effectively communicate orally and in written communication form information to internal/external vendors/clients, staff and management.

COGNITIVE LISTENING: Pertaining to the mental processes of perceiving, thinking, and remembering; Awareness with perception, reasoning and judgment; ability to think, learn and retain.

DECISION MAKING: Ability to collect the necessary information and listen to others to make decisions regarding project(s) and processes.

CUSTOMER SERVICE: Work with a variety of personalities and skill sets across Units and / or departments

MATHEMATICAL SKILLS: Ability to perform basic mathematical operations to include addition, subtraction, multiplication and division.  Ability to compute ratios and percentages.

PRIORITIZATION: Handle frequent interruptions yet refocus on the task at hand or determine the most important tasks. Adapt to a fast paced, high stress and changing environment.

ORGANIZATION: Ensure information can be found easily and tasks are completed on time. Pay attention to details. Maintain accuracy and quality.

• Ability to work overtime and different shifts when needed

email resume to croot@printspartan.com or call our office at 517-372-6910 for more information.

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Jan 07

Making Sense of Printer-Babble #1

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I come from a long-line of designers and illustrators. My father owned  a highly successful graphics production house in San Diego for years, and before him, my grandfather was a skilled illustrator and designer. I myself and creeping up on *gasp* 20 years in design. With all of that exposure to design and print, certain terms are second-nature to me — CMYK, Process, PMS, RGB, Traps, Bleeds and a whole host of others that that typical lay-person might only have a glimmer of understanding about.

Like any technically-driven field, print (and design) has its own particular jargon, and that can be tricky to navigate. Hopefully these post helps you make sense of some of this techno-babble, and as a result, grants you a better understanding of what us printing nerds are saying!

CMYK vs. RGB

If you only take one thing from this post, I hope it is this one, singular immutable fact: When it comes to print, CMYK=GOOD, RGB=BAD.

RGB is a color space (a way to identify and create colors) that relates to screens and monitors. Your computer moitor uses LCDs or LEDS that are Red, Green and Blue to create the colors, images and texts that you see on screen. CYMK is a color space that relates to how full-color images are printed on paper. CMYK, named for the inks that are mixed (Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Black) in varying percentages, and is also known colloquially, because there are four inks, as “4-Color Process,” or just “Process” in the print world.

So what’s the issue, you might ask? Well, when you create a file as RGB, and then print it as CMYK, the colors of the image will actually shift, which can lead to unexpected results. Sometimes it might not be that big of a deal, and sometimes it could be the difference between it being your corporate colors, and someone else’s! The graphic included here shows the same colors, as rendered in each color space. You can see how different they are!

ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS design in CMYK if it’s going to be printed. If you’re not sure how the final piece will be used, design in CMYK. The conversion from to CMYK to RGB always works better than the other way around.

Hopefully this  has helped you understand the differences between RGB and CMYK. We’ll be periodically posting blogs about different terms and what they mean. Have a particular term or concept you’d like us to cover? Shoot me an email at stephen@printspartan.com.

 

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Nov 24

An Attitude of Gratitude

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In our personal lives, it is said that we should have an attitude of gratitude. This should certainly carry over to our work lives as well. I had an experience recently that reminded me how important it is that we are grateful for what we have and show that by being thankful to those we come in contact with.

Company A is a great client of mine. They partnered with Company B on a recent project. At the insistence of Company A, we were the preferred vendor that Company B came to to produce part of this project. We produced our piece of this project in record time and delivered it as required. We thought that was the end of this interaction until about 2-3 weeks later.

Turns out there was a problem. Because the product was not up to the standards of Company A, Company B was coming back on us to re-do the entire product. This would have been an incredibly expensive proposition. It was decided that a meeting between the three of us would be the best way to problem solve and move forward. I was dreading the possibility of being thrown under the bus and blamed for something that we really weren’t responsible for. I couldn’t have been more wrong.thank-you

Since I feel that the key person in this story saved the day, we will call him “Clark Kent.” I was greeted promptly by Clark when I arrived for the meeting. Though we had never met before, he knew who I was and explained what a valued supplier we were to Company A. He had already looked into our problem and gathered all the relevant information. That is when the unimaginable happened. He accepted the responsibility for this problem. Neither we or Company B were blamed. Company A had had some miscommunication internally and that ultimately led to this hiccup. The calm demeanor and kindness this man exuded was unlike anyone I had ever dealt with.

Having spent 25 years in sales, this may have been a first. All too often people are more worried about who to blame than they are on finding a solution and moving on. It was a game changing moment for me. Why am I telling you this story? I chose to take this interaction to a higher level and not just let that be the end of it.

I got the name and email address for Clark’s boss. I relayed what an amazing interaction I had with Clark and what an tremendous asset he must be to Company A.  Clark emailed me back and thanked me for my gushing accolades about him. He said that in all his years, no one had ever taken the time to thank him for what he does and how he handles himself.

How sad is that? The point of this story is exactly that. Never miss an opportunity to be kind and thankful to customers, vendors or suppliers. Pay someone a compliment. Take a gift basket or box of baked goods to random people that you have contact with. Let those around you know that they are appreciated and that you are grateful for the opportunity work with them. We should always be humbled by the fact that we have a job. Every day is an opportunity to do something great for someone else.

What did you do today to make the world a better place?

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Nov 09

Buying with Confidence

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For years I’ve worked to understand what’s most relevant to buyers when choosing their vendors. Early on, I struggled to find anything other than price to sell on. Quality was of importance, but let’s face it, after a lifetime in the printing industry, the majority of printers do comparable work.

That being said, I’ve found a couple of traits that stand out above the rest. First, ultimately is fit! Believe it or not, not all printing companies are the same, some stru”"ggle in certain areas while others excel. For example, we have an 8-color perfecting (ability to print two sides at once) press. If you have a 12 or 24 page publication, for example, it’s likely we’ll be more competitive than a company with a 4- or 6-color press. Not only will we be more competitive cost wise, but we’ll likely have shorter turn times considering less make ready and one press run, compared to two.

Once a need and fit have been identified. Service and accommodation have to be considered. I’m quite certain, when I go to purchase any service or product for my home or car, I’m going to work with those that show an earnest effort and do as promised without too much hassle. As an example, a few months ago I had to have my windshield replaced. I didn’t have anyone in particular to work with so I started calling different companies. Cost was considered and I conceded that the quality would have to be the same. With that in mind, what really stuck out to me was the person on the other end of the phone. There was one gentleman that was extremely accommodating. I asked about having it put in at my office or home. His answer was “my job is to make it easy for you, you tell me where the car will be and we’ll come to you” WOW! SOLD!

Knowing that we meet the aforementioned values, what I find most valued is the confidence in buying from Spartan Printing. We’re a good company, and have been for nearly 50 years. We have quality people with a genuine concern to meet clients’ needs and expectations. All of my clients are busy; what I’ve found to be most important to them is when they give me a job, it’s considered done! I’ll tell you this, if you choose to buy from the fine folks of Spartan Printing, you can buy with confidence that we’re here to get the job done. And we will!

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Mar 27

Getting The Best Value When Selecting a Print Provider

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Like most people in sales, I frequently view bid opportunities with a combination of joy and dread. While it’s great to get a shot at new business, losing a big job over a few dollars is an awful feeling. Especially since I feel like my company and I bring something special to the equation.

In today’s “Walmart World,” it can be hard to get folks to believe that low price doesn’t necessarily mean best value. I realize that it’s self-serving to make such a statement. But it’s truly how we’ve done business with our vendors for nearly 45 years. For example, it’s important to keep paper costs down, but if the paper shows up late or the quality doesn’t allow us to produce a job we can be proud of, the low-cost option is a bad deal. So, we have nurtured relationships with our vendors in a way I would hope you’d do with us.

I may save buyers a few dollars by bidding lower than my competition. But I have saved them hundreds, even thousands of dollars by asking the right question or providing options based on my relationship with them and knowledge of how printed and promotional products help them achieve their objectives. I don’t know how many times I’ve saved money for my customers with one simple question: “Are you sure that’s the right quantity? You usually order half (or twice) that amount.”

Another consideration is the high error rate with first-time vendors who may simply misunderstand your instructions and have no basis for question you. Besides, how many first dates do you really want to go on?

There are several other advantages to working with a primary vendor. For example:

  • You won’t have the frustration of learning to communicate with new people every time you print a job.
  • You can save lots of time and money working with one of our designers, who knows your organization and your personal working style.
  • You’ll get a consistently high quality printing with a company that has samples of your work and produces it on the same equipment every time.
  • Delivery of your job becomes less troublesome when your regular printer knows how you like things packaged and where they need to be shipped.

Of course it’s a good idea to make sure that you’re getting a reasonable price for printed materials. But once you establish that, I’d strongly recommend looking at value. Think about ease of communication with the sales rep, design staff and even the accounting department. When you do, you might find yourself paying a few dollars more for peace of mind.

If you’d like to discuss this or any other print or promotional products issue, please give me a call my cell, 517-712-1770 or email me – randy@printspartan.com.

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Mar 04

Unique Opportunities Await!

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Years ago, I received a call from one of my customers, late on a Friday afternoon. After exchanging a few pleasantries, he said that he had a unique opportunity for me. My curiosity peaked, I asked what it was. Turns out he had a rush job he needed printed and delivered by Monday morning! That was definitely unique, likely impossible, but definitely unique.

Our lives and our jobs are constantly full of unique opportunities. We may see them as problems, headaches, obstacles or challenges. No matter the form they take, they are still opportunities for us to learn and grow. If it weren’t for all these opportunities, where else would we be able to learn in this trial by fire world.

Now I realize that this may be easier said then done. We all have situations occur in our lives that push us to the breaking point. That is just reality. What we can change however, is how we look at and approach these situations. When life throws a speed bump your way, use it as a tool to learn something from it. Once you’ve made it through, now you have a knowledge base that is at least one solution bigger than it was before. Next time you will be that much better equipped to problem solve a particular situation. Life is full of unique opportunities, seize them as ways to learn and grow. Never quit learning.

Carpe Diem!

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Feb 18

The Most Effective Promotional Products Under $1

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Part of building your business into a brand is with repeat impressions. The more people see your company logo, the quicker they begin to recognize you, which leads to trust and finally sales. Repeat impressions are the staple of promotional products.

However, the sheer amount of products to choose from can be overwhelming. Especially when trying to find that one product that is both unique and creative.  Remember the goal is to get something useful in the hands of consumers that will keep them reminded of your brand.

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Feb 05

Your Job Title Is Not What You Do

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fa·cil·i·tate

transitive verb \fə-ˈsi-lə-ˌtāt\

: to make (something) easier : to help cause (something)

: to help (something) run more smoothly and effectively

 

When I first started in this business, A lot of my professional self-esteem was tied up in my job title. Graphic Designer, PrePress Specialist, Team Lead, etc etc. I took pride in my accomplishments (rightfully so) and the title that went along with it. Even today, the short answer when someone asks what I do is “Graphic Designer.”

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Jan 28

CMYK vs. RGB vs. Spot – What does it all mean?

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This is a question we get a lot here at Spartan. What is the difference between CMYK and RGB, and why does it matter? It gets even more confusing when you bring Spot colors into the mix.

To start with, CMYK stands for Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, and Key. Key? What color is “Key”? Well, in a nutshell, it’s black. The other three ink color plates are keyed to the black plate, hence the name. RGB stands for Red, Green, and Blue. The key difference between CMYK and RGB is how they function. As you add the four CMYK ink colors together, you get progressively darker and darker colors until you end up with black. CMYK is based on pigments. RGB, by contrast, is based on light. If you add all three colors together, you get pure white. In effect, CMYK and RGB are foils to eachother. CYMK is also referred to as process, or 4-color process.

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