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2012 will be a rocky ride for many so taking early protective measures might make sense. Walter Hale looks at the key trends to help you prepare

ATLANTIC PRINT SOLUTIONS(APS) with our dedicated print industry sales, service and support team have many years experience in designing, developing and supplying our international Extended & Breakdown Warranty programs for the print, sign and digital industries of the UK, Europe and the US. APS offers a wide and varied range of productivity and profit enhancing warranty support and service packages for the UK & European Print, Sign and Digital industries, aimed to provide a competitively priced protection against the increasing costs of breakdown for all types of digital imaging, press and finishing equipment and machinery.

David Hudson, partner at Baker Tilly Restructuring and Recovery LLP, throws a lifeline to those of you who fear your business is about to become insolvent with this top tips feature.

If you’re not making the most of your purchasing and supply chain management you’re not getting the profits you could be. Phil Thompson, head of BPIF Business, walks you through what is acknowledged to be a complicated process.

Trying to tie down a comprehensive and universally accepted definition of ‘supply chain management’ reflects the physical management of suppliers in the sense that it is elusive, complicated and often a bit of a minefield.

Industry chiefs come together to discuss the findings of this annual wide-format survey and chew over the state of the sector.

Insolvency group KSA provides tactical advice to those thinking of expanding by buying a troubled business at a knock down price.

Selecting the correct Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s) are essential to any business but putting them in place can be easier said than done. For example, often a lot of money is spent on management information systems (MIS) to support the production process; however, it is often the case that capturing the correct information to enable accurate analysis is often a lot harder than is expected.

The phrase “rubbish in – rubbish out” is quoted on numerous occasions, so how do you ensure that the data generated is useful and relevant? What can you do to make sure that the generation of KPI’s will have the desired effect? How can they be produced effectively with the minimum of effort and how will you get your employees to buy into the whole idea?

Money, money, money…and how to get your hands on it more easily via print finance specialists.

With so many print companies diversifying into new and/or changed markets, the question has got to be asked: how valid are customer surveys and are they worth undertaking?

What can we learn from Apple’s late, lamented genius Steve Jobs? After his death, many eulogisers – like Eric Jackson and Gene Marks at Forbes magazine – quoted his famous address at Stanford University in 2005, as did Megan McArdle in The Atlantic (http://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2011/10/follow-your-bliss-sort-of/246350/) when she rebuked him for advising students to “follow their bliss” – i.e. pursue their dreams. Good advice if you are the next Steve Jobs, McArdle noted tartly, but most people aren’t.

Learn a thing or two about boosting sales and beating your competitors from Jerry Della Femina, author of the book ‘Those Wonderful Folks Who Gave You Pearl Harbor’ that inspired the TV series Mad Men.

Both business continuity and disaster recovery should be an integral part of business continuity management (BCM). Understandably, focus is often placed upon preventative actions, planning and testing but then any documentation, often written as a necessary chore to satisfy insurance companies, is filed away and hence, in many cases, provides no real benefit to the business - if anything, giving false comfort.

So are there reasons why you should be concerned about BCM and if so, what are the key stages that form part of any BCM?

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