InterForm 400 at iForce
iForce imageiForce is the UK's leading fulfilment business, providing e-commerce and catalogue fulfilment for John Lewis, EMI, Fujitsu and BMW as well as point of sale and marketing literature fulfilment for Learndirect, Kodak and Nokia.
Since its foundation in 1999, the company has invested heavily in the creation of an excellent IT and physical infrastructure to create Europe's leading Home Shopping fulfilment business. During 2002, the company consolidated its market leadership position with further investment and the acquisition of key clients.
iForce provides its clients with a fully integrated end-to-end process: the web site or call centre always knows what stock is available and the location of a parcel delivery. The company operates a policy of delivering goods within 24 hours from purchase and all goods are delivered with client specific fulfilment documentation - such as invoice and delivery note.
Traditionally documentation stationery has been pre-printed by the client and provided to iForce. However, one major motor company has an e-commerce site that includes several differently branded catalogues.
iForce imageAs Cliff Putterford, IT Director, explains:
"This client wanted the appropriate logo printed on each fulfillment document.Using our AS/400 based iForce system, this caused a significant headache and a problem that we needed to resolve rapidly to meet the demands of this important client."
iForce turned to Interform400 from SpaceTec, a solution that merges documents from the AS/400 with stored graphical images, using Oki C9000 Series colour printers to deliver reliable, good quality documentation. He says:
"Using Interform400 we were able to rapidly develop the right print solution that incorporates a range of images specified by our client. The solution produces high quality colour printed output and the adoption of multiple Oki printers has provided the flexibility and resilience required to meet client needs."
The Oki printers also proved extremely useful to resolve a problem experienced with another key client - a satellite TV shopping company. "This client has preprinted stationery that includes a tear-off pre-stuck label," says Putterford:
"This label is located on the bottom right corner, which raises the level of the paper in that corner. The existing print solution we had in place just could not cope."
With up to 8,000 orders daily, chewed forms and paper jams created significant productivity problems for iForce, undermining quality of service and adding significant cost to the fulfilment process. Putterford turned again to Oki, using the straight paper path LED functionality of the printers to resolve the problem. The company added several Oki C7000 Series colour printers to the existing Oki C9000 Series machines.
"The Oki printers have improved the productivity one hundred percent," he says. "The print process is totally reliable and requires no need for manual intervention or overseeing. We can now feel confident to meet the demands of our client, whatever the order volumes."
Printing adds value
iForce is now extending its use of Interform400 and Oki printers to meet the print requirements of all clients. Putterford explains:
"We are advising our clients to move away from pre-printed stationery and let us print forms on demand using stored images in Interform400. This will enable them to reduce up front investment in stationery, minimise wastage and lessen our paper storage requirements."
Furthermore, the service is adding value to the complete fulfilment process offered by iForce. He concludes:
"The adoption of Interform400 and Oki printers solved our problems and, critically, is enabling iForce to focus on core business delivery. The solution is a key element in providing added value services to our clients."