Cross-media printer and design business Datum has taken on cloud-based MIS Keyline to fully automate its production workflow.


Pearce: “Keyline stood out for us”

Keyline, from German developer Crispy Mountain, was announced for UK distribution by newly set up Cloud To Print in April this year. Installation and setup at Hatfield-based Datum is already underway and Cloud to Print is hoping for the system to be live by the end of February 2019.

Through its API integration, the MIS will seamlessly link to Datum’s Vpress web-to-print system, fully automating scheduling and production.

Additionally, through the Keyline app store, the system will integrate with Datum’s Pipedrive CRM, Dropbox, Power BI reporting tools, Xero accounting system and various couriers, as well as its Ricoh Pro C9100 digital printer, reducing time intensive manual tasks for the company’s administrative staff.

Datum managing partner Scott Pearce said: “The fact that Keyline is cloud-based is a major advantage. We’re trying to be a bit more flexible with our staff and allow them to work from home, as some have got children.

“It’s cross-platform so it will work across Macs, PCs or whatever else they are on. There are also no IT issues with it as you’re not patching bits of software and updating things, it should all just run as it’s meant to.”

The decision to invest in Keyline followed a review of the market that saw Datum look at around five other systems, all of which Pearce said “had their own pros and cons”.

“But Keyline stood out for us. We’d built our own system, which we’ve used for eight or nine years and have built up as we’ve gone along, but the main reason we’ve decided not to invest any further on that is because of the integration side of things – we wanted the new system to work with CRM and web-to-print.

“We also like the app store side of it, because if there is something it doesn’t do but that we want it to do in the future, we can get that created, it can be put onto the app store, and other people can purchase it as well.”

He added: “We are handling hundreds of jobs a day and with Keyline working in the background we can concentrate on the customer facing tasks rather than worrying about all the manual production tasks that can take so much time.”

10-staff Datum offers products ranging from standard commercial digital print through to complex marketing campaigns for financial, retail and exhibition clients. Also operating Roland DG wide-format machinery, the company turns over £1.1m from its 372sqm premises.


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