Print finishers are responsible for ensuring that all print in a printing house is finished to the highest-possible standards. They bind books and other publications by hand or machine, and their skills include: operating machinery such as saddle stitching, laminators, and gluing and binding equipment for hardcover/paperback books; folding experience; and guillotining experience. Their work environment is mostly indoors in a shop-type environment.
Being comfortable working with your hands is a must for this job. Print finishers must have the ability to manage their time, monitor machine gauges, dials, and other indicators, and perform quality control analyses including tests and inspections of products and services. They must have active listening skills and the ability to ask questions regarding the task at hand, and also know how to assess the cost-benefit analysis of a project.
Mental requirements include written comprehension, especially the ability to read and follow instructions. Knowledge of production processes, raw materials, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the manufacturing and distribution of print goods is held in high regard.
The physical abilities of print finishers are numerous. They must have manual dexterity to quickly grasp, manipulate, or assemble objects. Arm-steadiness and multi-limb coordination is advantageous. Trunk strength is a plus - abdominal and lower back muscles may be strained on occasion.
Print finishers should also work well with co-workers. They generally work normal business hours, five days per week. A trade/craft degree is advantageous for all applicants.
Print Finisher Tasks
Ensure books have been produced according to correct specifications.
Repair and re-bind damaged books.
Complete the book printing process through binding, trimming, and decorating the books, either by hand or using a machine.