What is JDF for the Print Service Provider?

JDF is a technology that allows systems from many different vendors to interoperate in automated and MIS centric workflows. While technically it is an XML software specification, it is more importantly and basically a means to allow a PSP to connect multiple vendor solutions to an MIS and to allow a workflow solution for automation and business process models.

JDF is broken down into logical roles (MIS to prepress, finishing, digital printing, web to print, wide-format etc.) Those roles typically pertain to which segment of work needs to be completed, but the result is a standard way to connect MIS-based job tracking, automation and workflow. This means that most modern MIS systems can communicate through JDF technology for job status and much more. Your MIS can receive messages about devices, jobs, inventory/stock, and queues, all through JDF technology.  It can be used to communicate to order consumables when stock is low, and be used to monitor numerous job parameters for accounting and other business process integration.

Historically, integration such as this (one vendor’s product to another) required extensive custom development and required interfacing with proprietary code and data. It is for this reason that CIP4, and its history has been developed. Through the use of JDF technology, the supporting partners of CIP4 are able to offer much more seamless integration of different vendor solutions.

JDF is prevalent.

Many PSPs are surprised to learn that much of the equipment they use, and their MIS systems are already JDF capable. Sometimes it is just a matter of working with an integrator to connect the interfaces. It is also something that can be implemented in stages; a facility can choose to implement JDF only where it makes sense to automate or job track, and not worry about other roles.

More Detailed Information

All the technical details regarding JDF and JMF can be found on the CIP4 Confluence website. This is a collaboration website where you can ask questions and join the tech talk: Visit now >>