Spotlight Interview: Jay Sperry, Graphics Commercialization Director

Jay SperryJay Sperry is the Director of Graphics Commercialization with Packaging Technology Integrated Solutions (PTIS), is a division of HAVI Global Solutions (HGS) – a privately held HAVI Group company. Sperry is responsible for strategy development, tactical implementation, business integration, and team development for the Graphic Services team. 

Sperry was instrumental in developing the current graphic management team through discovery and implementation of technology platforms, commercializing the proprietary ColorSentry print management solution, industry benchmarking, training, and staff management. Known as an innovator, sounding board, and realist, Sperry is skilled in taking complex technical knowledge and models and communicating those through interactive techniques and methods to diverse audiences of practitioners and business leaders.

So Jay, tell us about yourself.

My interest in graphics and printing really began in high school. I earned a degree in graphic arts and printing from Appalachian State University. After college, I accepted a job at a printing company where I worked with operators and print technicians, and ran a printing press. Gaining early hands-on experience and regular interaction with stakeholders helped me see the big picture—from creative intent to finished package— and launched my career in problem solving. I returned to school to complete a graduate program in graphic communications and, after working as a package print consultant and print industry trainer at Clemson University, I joined HAVI Global Solutions.

Are print standards for packaging meeting expectations? Are they better, more effective?

Print capabilities in the packaging space have improved substantially in the last three to five years as we have seen greater ability to provide highly decorative, advanced graphics on challenging packaging substrates. Expanded gamut printing (expanding the range of color beyond conventional four-color process printing) is a great example of a technological advance in the industry that is enabling printers to standardize their presses with a base set of components. The result is a less complex, more cost effective approach for printers and potential savings that can be shared with the brands. More importantly, the end product is higher quality.

Why does it take so long to approve artwork?

If all the decision makers and designers could be in the same room at the same time with the right materials and equipment for every project and every graphic, it wouldn’t take very long at all—but that’s not a realistic scenario. With packaging artwork there are several stages along the print supply chain and many cycles of approvals—including environmental, legal and nutritional approvals—depending on the project.

How can you, and your team, help shorten the approvals process or at least make it more efficient?

Understanding how the print system works and how creative will be transformed in the final packaging, knowing what to expect, planning accordingly and designing with the end in mind, will reduce costs and shorten the approvals process. We know the right questions to ask and anticipate challenges. We know different substrates and equipment capabilities and have workflows in place to manage all of these elements so brands aren’t making costly changes at the last minute that slow production. We also have a technology platform to manage approvals and enable real-time collaboration, as if everyone really were in the same room. Having real-time print reproduction data via our technology platform enables rapid decision-making and continuous improvement for managing expectations.

You can view Jay’s webinar ‘Managing Color in Complex Packaging Supply Chains‘ on demand by clicking here.



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *