Customer stories


Brand building company delivers “true colors” through analytics. Phototype integrates OpenText iHub into its Print Quality Management system, creating consistent consumer package graphics every time


  • Offer robust project management capabilities, enable clients to view real-time data on print supply chain status
  • Create a visually appealing and actionable tool that leverages graphics
  • Keep client data secure while ensuring accessibility


  • Visibility for customers to track real-time brand and printing data, supplier quality

  • Customizable, secure and personalized customer portals

  • Rapid development with easy integration of data sources


Creating accountability, accessing actionable data. Print buyers dreaded the Monday morning “throw down.” All it took was a Sunday shopping trip by a product manager or executive. During a quick glance at their product on the shelves, they would notice the color on their packaging was off. Come Monday morning, they would hunt down their print buyer, looking for answers. To make matters worse—with different printers on the job—it was often difficult to quickly isolate where the issue had originated.

Bird's eye view of people working at board meeting table on their devices.

Within five months, we went from not having enough of what clients want, to having way more than they thought they’d ever get.

Gary Russell
Vice President of New Product Development, Phototype

Clients needed a better way to keep on top of print quality. One that eliminated those Monday morning “throw downs” and offered them assurances throughout the entire printing process. Phototype sought to give consumer packaged goods (CPG) companies a better option.

With a history going back almost 100 years, Phototype has long focused on driving innovative solutions and quickly adapting as its clients and the industry evolved. That commitment to continuous improvement has helped them set themselves apart and keep pace with the ever-expanding needs of CPG companies, including global leaders in household products, candy and beverages.

As those clients started looking for more hands-on project management—asking for more efficient ways to ensure tight quality control over their brands and packaging—Phototype needed a way to achieve it. They began by offering data through Excel spreadsheets, but often fell behind with a rapidly growing backlog. They needed a solution that would increase efficiency, functionality and visual appeal.

They set out to create a robust, integrated Print Quality Management (PQM) system that would offer instant access to actionable data in a searchable database, all presented in a visually appealing way through a business analytics solution. The system would let clients pull up data on a specific job, brand, color or printer to determine how their print supply chain was performing, both in real-time and compared to historical data.

They just needed the right business analytics technology to help them build it.

Choosing and implementing iHub

The PQM system Phototype envisioned—called BizIQ™—would be a centralized data portal where they could provide dashboards and reports to deliver real-time brand insights to clients without having to write a new application each time. For the reporting component, Phototype started its journey with open source options, creating two reports through the open source-based OpenText™ Analytics Designer. But they found they needed more robust, automated functionality with enhanced security options. To achieve this they looked at several commercial business intelligence and analytics applications.

Phototype conducted an exhaustive search for the right analytics technology, comparing the offerings of each potential tool against their unique set of requirements. Specific areas of interest included graphic and reporting quality, ease of use and cost over time.

“This is a fairly complicated system—it’s more like buying a factory than it is buying a house,” said Gary Russell, Phototype’s vice president of new product development. “It took us about six months of in-depth evaluation; narrowing it down from seven different companies.”

The OpenText™ Information Hub (iHub), stood out among the solutions Phototype examined, both for its visually appealing graphical capabilities and multitenant security options. They wanted a user-friendly, customizable tool that could integrate seamlessly with their own applications and iHub met all of those requirements.

Within three months of choosing iHub, the entire Phototype team was trained and leveraging their new BizIQ solution with customers. “People were amazed at how fast we had it up. Some of the things they thought were going to be up in six months actually happened within the first month,” said Julie Hanley, Phototype’s director of application development.

Financial users, customer account managers and project managers could now access the data they needed for specific customer accounts. Different users could drill down to varying levels of detail, depending on their unique needs. Customers’ print production, quality and brand managers, and their printers, used dashboards and visualizations to view and drill down on quality data. “We’re receiving very positive feedback from companies that we’ve rolled this out to,” added Russell. “I’d say within five months we went from not having enough of what clients want, to having way more than they thought they’d ever get.”

The data we present has to be very visual. That was a big issue for us—we had to have something that was graphically and aesthetically more advanced.

Steve Carter
Senior Vice President of Technology, Phototype

Visual appeal, flexible infrastructure and information security

Phototype needed a solution that would engage their customers, offering visually appealing analytics and actionable insights. One of the biggest benefits of iHub is its customizable report and dashboard options, with high-end graphics that display customer data in an attractive, compelling manner, but with a depth of functionality that would take Phototype’s BizIQ solution beyond superficial appeal. “The data we present has to be very visual,” said Steve Carter, senior vice president of technology at Phototype. “Data visualization is really important to us, because we are a graphics company. It’s okay if a bank gives you a table of data, but a graphics company needs to show you some pictures. That was a big issue for us—we had to have something that was graphically and aesthetically more advanced.”

The team also liked that iHub was flexible to its changing needs. As a company that prides itself on constant reinvention, Phototype needed a business analytics solution that would keep up with any evolutions. They also required a tool that would meet the varied needs of their clients and internal users and work with their multiple data streams. iHub not only offered personalization, as well as custom and ad hoc reporting options, but also integrated well with the various systems the company was already using—including a FileMaker® solution for packaging, as well as SQL and MySQL databases for their financial operations and help desk application. It could also access multiple data sources, including cached and live data.

Finally, with a number of clients relying on them to keep their data private, Phototype required a solution that offered unique logins and enhanced security to keep that information secure.

To accomplish that, Photoype chose a multitenant option within iHub, which enabled them to set up a firewall between each client’s data for separate access. With that in place, one customer couldn’t accidentally come across the data of another. Unique custom login pages were also created, with a separate banner once each client logged in, personalized for that client.

About Phototype

Founded in 1919, Cincinnati-based Phototype is one of the longest running, independently owned brand-building businesses in the United States, creating recognizable brands and eye-stopping graphics for consumer package goods companies around the world. They employ more than 250 professionals, specializing in packaging graphics and high-end prepress work. For more information, visit: