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Analytic Reflections from Conflict Zones
A Cautionary Tale for a Polarizing America and World
By James R. Adams
13th March 2019
Print On Time
No-one – authors, sales agents and distributors, customers and publishers – likes it when books are not available. How frustrating it is to find just the book you are looking for, only to be told it’s ‘Out of Stock’. But publishers don’t like to carry warehouses full of titles that they hope they might sell one day.
This led to the innovation of ‘Print on Demand’, where books are printed digitally when an order is received. But since customers are unpredictable, and increasingly publishers use larger and larger outsourced print and centres which ship to large warehouse distribution centres, this can mean more queuing for machine time, more delays, patchy print quality, and a lot of shipping and handling.
This problem might have gone away completely, had eBooks eclipsed printed books. But hard copy books are very persistent, particularly in academic markets. And even the most radical forecasts don’t predict the disappearance of the printed book at any time in the foreseeable future.
Cambridge Scholars Publishing is almost unique in the modern-day publishing industry in that we maintain our own print, storage and despatch system, in-house. We call it ‘Print on Time’. It also means we keep skilled jobs at home, in our Newcastle HQ, rather than outsourcing them. We only handle an order once, reducing shipping miles.
Our Print on Time system’s clever predictive algorithm ‘learns’ demand and sales patterns, and maintains micro-stocks, keeping them constantly topped up. So our specialist digital presses are never idle – they constantly tick over, topping up our 7000 or so titles in stock with a few copies here and there. Since we introduced Print on Time in 2015, we have never – yet – had a stock-out.
In fact, so clever - and economical - is CSP’s Print on Time system, other publishers and distributors have asked us if they can use it too!