Easing the Pressure
For companies that do high volumes of self-mailing, envelope-inserters are the usual, tried-and-true method. But are they the most efficient? Pressure seal systems are an attractive alternative, allowing businesses to quickly send out checks, payroll documents and more. Moving to a new system may seem daunting, but thanks to some thoughtful input from industry professionals, Print+Promo has the information you need to take the pressure (get it?) out of transitioning to pressure seal.
Getting past the hefty price tag associated with pressure sealers is one of the biggest challenges to overcome, and industrial-volume pressure sealers don't come cheap. A quick Google search returns some machinery in the $80,000 price range. The good news is that pressure seal equipment has come down in price over the years, and other, more affordable options are now available.
Some medium-volume pressure sealers sell for less than $5,000, and low-volume tabletop systems can be purchased for $2,000. This has given pressure sealers a competitive edge over envelope inserters, according to Larry Willman, senior product manager for Wilmer, Coldwater, Ohio. "Because the price points of desktop folder/sealers are much lower these days, the pressure seal market has really opened up to users that couldn't afford an automated solution previously and are still inserting envelopes by hand," he said.
Increased output also makes up for the initial cost. "It's all about the volume," Willman said. "The more documents you can convert to pressure seal, the easier [distributors] can help customers justify [the cost]." He added that many departments within an organization often share one unit to help offset the initial investment.
While cost of production, labor and machinery needs to be taken into account, there are long-term benefits that can save a company time and money. Art Waganheim, vice president of operations for Paitec USA, Davie, Fla., expanded on a few of them. "For single-page documents, there really is no benefit to using an envelope, which then requires an inserter machine," he said. "Folder/inserter machines are slower and more expensive than pressure seal machines. Plus, by using pressure seal machines, the mailer saves the cost of the envelope and having to find storage space for boxes and boxes of envelopes in their office."