What Do I Really Need:  Print & Apply vs. Document Insertion

Posted by Baumfolder Corporation on 9/26/18 10:29 AM
Print and Apply versus Document Insertion

In today's high-speed ecommerce world, many order fulfillment centers and distribution warehouses are turning to automation to become more efficient and help increase carton output and order processing.

The two main end-of-line “document handling” solutions that companies are turning to are: Print and Apply and Document Insertion.

These specialized systems are designed to process and streamline the slow manually intensive operation of printing and handling the documents that need to ship with every order that is processed.

Both are great at getting important documentation where you need them, but which one is right for you?

Print and Apply

An industry staple for years, print and apply systems are a great way to secure shipping labels, BOL, and invoices (normally packaged) and placed on the outside of cartons/packages.

Most print and apply systems can come with limitations like document size, printing size, number of documents, are just a few. These limitations might cause you to be stuck having to use the equipment manufacturer’s costly labels and consumables. Modifying your current document (s) design and layout to conform to what their system can handle is another added sacrifice.

Print & Apply: A Better Option

Baumfolder’s print and apply systems don’t have the same limitations that commonly plague most other print and apply systems. Our solutions allow you the possibility to use standard 8.5” x 11” paper providing you the freedom to use the document design you want, while saving money with standard copier paper over costly labels and forms.

Our solutions offer both robotic and pick and place applicators for precise placement of sealed document(s) on your carton.

Document Insertion

For years, document inserters had many limitations, most were only able to insert one form/page at a time. Multiple pages meant multiple document inserters. Many companies ended up with product conveyors with 5-10-20 or more small stack-single inserters mounted all around them.

Imagine a dozen-plus inserters littering your conveyor lines, then imagine the 5-10 employees who would be required just to keep the inserters full and running.

The document insertion systems of today are faster, and some enable companies the capability to print, fold, and insert all inline and from one single station. Much like print and apply solutions, some document insertion systems can come with limitations. 

Not All Document Inserters are the Same

Some document inserters on the market today are not able to handle things like multiple pages or variable carton sizes; in fact, some systems have trouble performing their primary function of inserting! If done right, document inserters are great automation systems that can handle ALL your company’s documents from invoices, packing list, coupons, work instructions, and countless more.

Baumfolder’s document inserters are geared for one main goal: Getting your documents in the right box at the right time.

Our document inserters are tailored around your needs. This means we are not limited on providing you the solutions you need to be successful. Our ability to print inline allows your operations to handle personalized documents.

Baumfolder’s multi-level inserter and folding module gives you the unique advantage to fold and insert documents into variable carton sizes.
Need more than one document in each carton? No problem! Our gathering technology allows for multiple page inserts on each order processed.

The Difference Between Print and Apply vs. Document Insertion

In the end, the big difference between print and apply and document insertion is placing documents on verses in the carton.

Print and apply are solutions that apply documentation to the outside of your boxes/ cartons mostly taking place at the end of your order processing.

Document inserters have everything to do with getting your forms and documents in the box/carton, taking place your end of line order processing.

Knowing where you need your documentation is the first step in defining the right type of automation for you. At Baumfolder, we can help you determine which solution is your best option. Call us at 800-543-6107 and ask how we can help you, or contact us online!

Are you missing inefficiencies in your order fulfillment and distribution? Check out our guide on how to conduct a process evaluation. >>


Am I Missing Inefficiencies? Conduct a process evaluation of your order fulfillment & distribution. 

Topics: Order Fulfillment & Packaging

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