Advances in Automated Quality Control Solutions

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By Libby White – Packaging Europe


With over 20 years of research and development activities, Global Vision is an industry leader in automated proofreading solutions. Its line of Expert Solutions has received commercial endorsement from the world’s leading pharmaceutical, consumer packaged goods (CPG), and artwork management companies. Recently the company has ventured into cloud-based applications with the release of QCanywhere. Libby White spoke with Reuben Malz, president QCanywhere, Global Vision about the latest solutions on offer.


QCanywhere is the latest innovation available from Global Vision. Reuben Malz explains, “QCanywhere is a cloud-based business application bundle (QCapps™) that is simple to access from any device. These apps enable businesses to inspect documents regardless of geographic location. Reports can be generated and shared by e-mail to collaborate on quality and dramatically reduce approval cycles and time-to-market.”


As the global marketplace becomes smaller many companies are expanding into new geographical regions owing to economic, political or other reasons. This decentralisation can, in many cases, slow down the approval process and reduce operational efficiency, flexibility and profitability, while also increasing time-to-market. To enable access to documentation for this dispersed workforce, Global Vision saw a requirement for technology changes.


QCanywhere offers a significant improvement on the usual process for approving artwork. Mr Malz comments, “Artwork approval typically involves between three and ten internal departments within an organisation as well as numerous offsite third-party suppliers, partners and customers.” These apps are therefore offered as a solution to the current process, enabling artwork to be approved quickly and easily.


He is proud to point out, “QCanywhere permits offsite or Remote Quality Control (RQC) anywhere within the workflow process and regardless of the location of the individual user.”


Benefits for the packaging and printing industries


For the packaging and printing industries, QCanywhere can help manage the workflow process, enabling all key decision makers to get involved easily at every stage. Reuben Malz points out, “For example, an inspection can be done and reports generated and shared to facilitate – signing off on proofs, prior to the first print, or at any point during the run. This helps to minimize potential returns or re-do orders.”


Additionally, using an automated inspection solution like QCanywhere is in excess of 90 per cent faster than manual inspection methods. “QCbarcode is capable of inspecting a full press sheet of barcodes in seconds, where traditional methods can take upwards of 30 seconds to inspect a single barcode. For a press sheet containing many barcodes this amounts to significant time savings,” according to Mr Malz.  


QCanywhere is also unique to the marketplace. The $1 per inspection price is designed to make this an indispensable and affordable tool to protect brand integrity for any company. It is the only SaaS solution available currently that offers a multitude of business apps for the complete inspection process. The technology contained within each of the apps is derived from over 20 years of development through Global Vision.


“For instance, in QCtext we do not export the text out of the PDF file as is done typically, instead we read it directly from within the PDF thus preserving the document layout and formatting,” Reuben Malz explains. “For deployments of 10 or more users we also offer QCenterprise, and depending upon the deployment can be hosted on a private cloud or on Premises.”


Constant developments in apps


The QCapps range of innovations has also been recently launched by Global Vision and more new developments in apps are within the testing stage. The QCapps range offers a variety of new features and functionalities that are unique in the market.


QCtext for example, enables the user to automatically compare text files MS Word-PDF, PDF-PDF, Word-Word. QCartwork allows users to identify all artwork differences automatically including colour, font, text and size. QCspell enables spell checks of text and PDF documents.


Particularly useful for the print and packaging industries, is the QCbarcode app. With this app one can grade and decode barcodes on labels, cartons or press sheets, with new QR barcode decoding as well as a Bar Width Reduction (BWR) calculator. Also, the QCprint app can be used to inspect print and proofs against printed components and QCbraille allows the user to automatically translate Braille into readable text and includes a full foreign language library.


With an already extensive range of apps on offer, Global Vision is in the process of testing and launching more apps. Reuben Malz adds, “With regards to new development of QCapps, we are currently testing our new QCnotes annotation and collaboration app.”


On a global scale


With headquarters located in Montreal, Canada and European corporate offices in the United Kingdom and Germany, Global Vision has a wide range of customers. It sells worldwide and has deployed its solutions in over 75 countries. Global Vision works very closely with all of the leading pharmaceutical, CPG, chemical, printing and packaging companies. Reuben Malz explains, “What sets us apart from everyone else is that we have built our company by listening to our customers, understanding their needs and working closely with them to develop solutions that will work in the real world.”


Global Vision has significantly expanded its presence in the European market. With corporate offices in the UK and Germany, as well as an extensive reseller and distribution network in every European country, it has a strong basis to expand its network further.


Reuben Malz concludes, “We see diversification into new vertical markets as being one of the key factors for future growth for QCanywhere. QCanywhere was created for any company looking to protect their brand; we have seen a lot of interest in not only packaging and printing but also with their customers.”


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