2013 MMA User’s Group Meeting benefits from an unprecedented up-close perspective

More than 20 newspaper sites participate in Muller Martini’s annual SLS inserters training, networking and best practices event

The meeting’s theme, “Getting Back to Basics,” presented insights and recommendations on how to return SLS inserters to baseline status, a welcomed topic since numerous newspaper consolidations have resulted in mailroom staff needing to re-learn how to optimize the equipment’s performance. The training included basic set-up and tune-up procedures. Moreover, User Group attendees got an opportunity to walk the factory floor and interact with Muller Martini product specialists who could not only help troubleshoot problems, but demonstrate how various upgrades, enhancements and rebuilds can significantly increase productivity in older machines.

Along with its networking and training benefits, the MM User’s Group has long served as a forum for users to exchange ideas and experiences—oftentimes key ingredients for future development of mailroom machines and products. Commented Dan Cropley, Muller Martini’s Product Manager, Newspaper Division, “User group participants are always candid, enthusiastic and insightful, and their feedback is one of the main reasons why Muller continues to develop innovative inserting technology that helps mailrooms compete and thrive. What’s more, this annual event gives us an opportunity to share current machine upgrades that users may be unfamiliar with.”

One of the most well-received presentations was given by John Frahm, Production Director of The Baltimore Sun. Mr. Frahm spoke about the commercialization of today’s packaging centers and shared his direct experiences with expanding business by marketing the paper’s mailroom services to other commercial applications, not just local newspapers. The initiative has been a resounding success. In fact, today, The Baltimore Sun represents just a fraction of their inserting work.

Cory Reynard, a machine operator at Gannett, summed up his User Group experience this way: “I learned a great deal and having the conference at Muller’s Allentown facility was an excellent venue. I had valuable conversations with everyone I met. It was a great success and I think all the other participants would agree.”

But perhaps the greatest takeaway of the meeting was in the productivity gains as attendees learned how to avoid unnecessary machine downtimes. Working with the Muller team, one attendee in particular was able to easily rectify an inserter’s electrical malfunction that had previously resulted in more than two hours of equipment downtime.

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