GMC PortalBuilder

This web-based workflow can help in building effective personalised communications, VDP and direct mailing from data handling through design to final print production and delivery, explains Sachin Shardul

02 Sep 2011 | By Sachin Shardul

Online storefronts are no longer a novelty but a necessity as the printers try to shrink costs, increase productivity and the keep their clients happy.

GMC launched the PortalBuilder at Print 2009 in Chicago. With this web-based workflow system, GMC targeted the variable data printing (VDP), high impact personalised marketing communication programs and direct mailing business. According to the software company, this web-to-print software allows the printers to manage the business with efficiency and high profitability.

PortalBuilder creates complete web-based marketing centres and web-enabled automation for integrated, multi-channel personalised campaigns.

Although, there has been no installation for this workflow in India, it has 25 installations worldwide. GMC is confident about the impact it will create for the print service providers and can help customers build effective, efficient personalised marketing communications programs, from data handling through design to final production and delivery.

Purnendu Mohanty, managing director at GMC Software Technology, South Asia, says: "With the GMC PortalBuilder, print professionals can be competitive in many ways which can drive the business with efficiency and profitability. The traditional jobs like business cards can be produced and delivered with less effort and more profits."

Functionality of PrintNet
The GMC integrated marketing system expands the functionality of the PrintNet software platform to help customers build efficient workflow and documents and capitalise on variable data-based marketing campaigns.

Mohanty says: "GMC recognises the essential link between variable document production workflow and targeted marketing strategies. With the integrated marketing system, customers can connect these aspects of their business for seamless execution. PortalBuilder gives the customer solid foundations for creating their communications infrastructure."

While many companies have online ordering for static printed materials, the adoption of time-saving, web-enabled workflow automation for variable data documents has been stymied by development and deployment challenges. PortalBuilder workflow simplifies the process and help the marketing firms, service providers and other businesses to implement time saving, web-enabled automation for variable data documents and integrated personalised multi-channel campaigns. Marketers gain more flexibility and faster results by having easier access to all the variable components they need.

If the print service provider is already using GMC PrintNet infrastructure to drive color and variable communications, they have a special advantage. PortalBuilder slides smoothly into the existing PrintNet workflow, with a familiar interface and common production engine that speeds deployment and simplifies operation.

Mohanty says: "Anything created in PrintNet, such as variable data fields, personalised images and colour specifications can become part of the storefront offering without any loss of functionality. PortalBuilder uses the same platform like that of PrintNet production engine, which is capable of handling millions of variable documents. As the business grows, the storefront services scale simultaneously. It can support the small jobs to the very large, even when they are submitted via the storefront."

Online storefront
From its storefront core, GMC’s PortalBuilder creates a fast, easy gateway for personalised marketing communications, so that users can expand services and productivity. A desktop wizard accelerates implementation and document development, and no coding is required. Existing marketing assets can be used to build a user-centric web front-end.

Mohanty says: "This administrative back-end manages production, ordering, scheduling, and multi-channel distribution. The modular, standards-based storefront core can be linked to third-party accounting systems, delivery tracking, and on-line payment process to further integrate the production workflow into the business."

Personalisation and colour production
PortalBuilder offers capabilities for online storefronts, like shopping carts, order management, electronic proofing and customised views and also supports backend production for complex, profitable and high-volume colour printing for personalised communications.

According to Mohanty, GMC PortalBuilder gives a competitive edge and drives the digital printing business as well as other new businesses. It gives the tools needed for the rapid creation, management and digital production of complex personalised documents for transactional promotional, direct marketing, on-demand publishing, customer correspondence and transactional applications."

No web experience
PortalBuilder is based on the same templates as GMC PrintNet document layouts. Both the web storefront and complex production jobs can be created with the same toolset and staff. No web design experience is required.

GMC’s PortalBuilder is designed for document professionals, not programmers. The desktop client in PortalBuilder keeps the things simple and easy to learn. It provides only the tools required for getting the work done and are powerful and optimised for printing.
Mohanty says: "Without any web programming experience, users can design, test, and deploy micro-sites, which integrate automatically into the PortalBuilder storefront."

Less cost and more business
GMC’s PortalBuilder enables savings in time and costs, resulting in strong business growth. Its end-to-end document solutions provide complete control over the entire document lifecycle, featuring a web-based collaboration and approval process, advanced graphical document workflow and data integration from multiple sources.

Mohanty says: "The idea is reduce cost and increase the profit and the PortalBuilder does exactly that. The profit margines flourish as the printers gain more revenue from existing customers and acquire new ones, all with less overhead, labor and cost."

With more and more print service providers looking to invest in the new digital technology to cater to the VDP, high impact personalised marketing communication programs and direct mailing business, the GMC’s PortalBuilder can be of great advantage in terms of time and cost saving and increasing the profit margins.

PrintNet T Designer Version 6.0 or better
PrintNet T Designer XML data input Required, but not included
PrintNet T production formatter Full proofing capability requires access to either the command line or server based production engine. Server based production formatter is preferred
PrintNet PDF output protocol Required for full proofing capability. Not supplied with client

Purnendu Mohanty
GMC Software Technology India
+91 22 2781 363 7

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