Q: What print negotiations points are there for negotiating a contract with a print vendor?
Generally, volume commitments hold the most weight during direct negotiations.  However, make sure you first gather all the analytic data available regarding your spend (pre-press, press, finishing, fulfillment), an important preparation step to assist in the development of your print spend model (at least 18 months out).   The devil is in the details, and in print, the more details you have the better. The following list shows the most common cost elements that need to be known for successful “should costs”, contract negotiation and implementation into a procure-to-pay technology system that incorporates any degree of static rate cards or even flex-rate cards (rate cards that allow for varying specifications).  When these costs are known, meaningful RFIs, RFPs, eSourcing, and aggregation and capacity planning can occur.

  • Set-up costs
  • Pre-flighting
  • Proofing
  • Author’s Alterations
  • Hand Assembly
  • Print-on-Demand
  • Special Services
  • Lead-Time Discounts
  • Distribution/Fulfillment
  • Inventory  •     Transportation
  • Overs Policies
  • Bindery & Press Rates
  • Paper & Substrates
  • Vendor Portals
  • Time Compression

Each of these cost elements plays a vital role in cost reduction, and cost re-allocations.