Oxford University Press

About the Client

Oxford University Press is part of the University of Oxford. It is the largest University press in the world, publishing an extensive range of educational journals and titles worldwide. OUP publish in over 40 languages and are therefore available for all audiences, supporting the University’s goal of furthering education and disseminating knowledge.

Details of the Work

OUP publish over 6000 titles every year and they require back copies or historical issues of these titles to be stored and then dispatched around the world. The titles themselves differ in size and weight from a thin A5 sized booklet to a perfect bound heavyweight journal that is close to 3Kgs in weight. The books have to be stored in a way that facilitates fast picking and packing, due to the client requiring these titles to be sent out on a daily basis. Stock control is vital, with the client needing to know the exact numbers of each title held and needing to be notified if they drop below a certain level. Fast, effective and reliable postage and courier services are also a critical requirement, and the client must have the ability to share tracking data with end clients. Lastly, the client requires a full breakdown of all activity each calendar month to support the invoice received.

The Solution from CMS

Central Mailing Services constructed a dedicated mezzanine floor to securely store in excess of 5600 titles for OUP in a purpose built, temperate controlled environment whilst being kept away from harmful UV Rays. This mezzanine was built within the brand-new state of the art 46,000 sq. ft production centre and supports dedicated, custom designed racking and filing areas to store all publications. Each bay has a unique code and is replicated electronically in a bespoke software programme. The data, supplied by the client on a daily basis, is automatically loaded into our bespoke platform; “Data Freighter”. This platform automatically generates the pick sheets and address information in the most effective pick order and then sends them to print. Each morning the required items are picked, packed to an agreed specification and then dispatched for onward delivery. The stock is automatically picked from the platform and stock levels are adjusted accordingly whilst it is also able to alert the client if stock falls below a certain level. All tracking information is auto uploaded and shared in an agreed format with the client, while also being stored and converted to the required backing sheets for the invoice. Central Mailing Services process all mailings for the Journals themselves and all overs from each print and mail run and loaded into the software platform and then put away as per the dedicated mapping system. The items are dispatched using a number of audited postal carriers and couriers, providing the best value for the end client whilst being protected by an automatic routing matrix.

The Result

OUP are delighted with the way that Central Mailing Services look after the back-issue work. The subscribers receive their titles as per their expectations. Constant dialogue and auto reporting between CMS and OUP ensures that their busy back-issues department have all the information required when dealing with their customers. The stock is treated as if it were a library and the packing and routing rules make sure the end recipients receive their titles in perfect condition. Cost savings on the picking, packing and distribution of the journals have also been welcomed by OUP. The system is tried and tested and runs effortlessly in the background, working that well that CMS have rolled it out to a number of other publishing clients.

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