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Greg Cholmondeley

In-Plant Managers Converge on Des Moines for IPMA 2024

Sharing growth and best practices in the in-plant industry

Jun 10, 2024 8:00:00 PM


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The In-Plant Printing and Mailing Association (IPMA) recently held its much-anticipated 2024 educational conference from June 2-6 in Des Moines, Iowa. Hosted at the Community Choice Credit Union Convention Center, the event was marked by a significant turnout and a vibrant atmosphere of learning, networking, and innovation.


Growing Participation and Enthusiastic Newcomers

The conference saw around 150 in-plant attendees, including an impressive 46 first-timers. This increase in new attendees signals a positive trend and growing interest in the IPMA community. Additionally, the event attracted approximately 100 vendor participants, showcasing the importance of vendor partnerships in advancing the in-plant industry.


An Agenda Filled with Relevant Themes

The agenda was rich with general sessions, a bustling vendor fair, and diverse breakout sessions. Keynote speakers Chris Cornelison and Danny Adams inspired attendees with their insights on fostering teamwork and enhancing productivity. The event also featured engaging activities such as the IPMA Fun Run/Walk, a welcome reception, and the In-Print & IPMA Awards Banquet—all of which facilitated valuable networking opportunities.


A central theme of the conference was the focus on growth, particularly through inkjet technology and automation. These topics underscore the industry’s commitment to modernization and efficiency, aligning with the broader trends of technological advancement in printing and mailing.



Noteworthy Sessions

  • Advancing Your In-Plant: Bob Neubauer from In-plant Impressions magazine highlighted significant findings on in-plant printing services, including revenue growth, the importance of wide format and digital printing, and the need for increased automation to tackle staffing challenges. He presented contrasting case studies from the universities of Missouri and Colorado State that emphasized the importance of demonstrating the value of in-plant services to avoid outsourcing threats.
  • The Impact of Innovation on Successful In-Plants: Brent Taylor from Ricoh discussed the advancements in automation technologies observed at drupa, including artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning, and Internet of Things (IoT). He highlighted how these innovations can streamline workflows, reduce labor hours, and maintain high-quality outputs—which are crucial for in-plant operations to stay competitive and cost-effective.
  • Our Inkjet Journey: Ben Fowler and Kelly Anglin from Shelter Insurance shared their experience transitioning to inkjet technology, detailing the challenges and benefits. Their successful adoption of the Canon varioPRINT iX-3200 improved production efficiency, color consistency, and operational reliability—demonstrating the significant advantages of modern inkjet solutions.
  • News from Inside the Beltway: Leo Raymond from Mailers Hub provided an overview of the USPS's current challenges, emphasizing the importance of understanding postal regulations as well as adopting technological advancements to improve mailing efficiency and accuracy.
  • AI in Print, a Year Later: I had the very nice opportunity to highlight the rapid adoption of AI and robotics in the printing industry, showcasing examples of how these technologies can enhance productivity and reduce operational costs.


InfoCenter subscribers can read the full event Analysis in our Production Workflow Advisory Service.


Keypoint Intelligence Opinion

The 2024 IPMA educational conference was a resounding success, marked by its engaging sessions, innovative discussions, and a strong sense of community. The focus on growth, modernization, and efficiency reflects the industry’s commitment to staying ahead of technological trends and operational challenges. As the IPMA prepares for its 2025 conference, the continued enthusiasm and participation of its members promise another year of valuable insights and industry advancements.


How does your in-plant leverage automation to address staffing challenges and enhance productivity? Are you going to the 2025 conference in Spokane, Washington? We’ll see you there!


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