One of the common tedious roles in offices is the folding, inserting and processing of larger volumes of mail. A big instance of this is with payroll systems where paper cheques are used and where information inserts need to be added to each envelope.
Processing this kind of item for larger volumes on a biweekly or even monthly basis can become a thankless and tedious task which can be much better handled by a bit of technology.
Of course it is not only payroll that can benefit from this kind of solution. Promotional pieces prepared for direct mailing, invoices and statements are other good candidates. In the past the way to address this work has been to just put it in the hands of someone who has other duties to perform and who can be tasked to fill in on the mail production roll. As offices have become leaner this kind of surplus manpower is not readily available and the mailing task becomes a real headache.
Enter the Folder Inserter
A folder inserter is a device which is expressly designed to process different types of paper items, fold them as needed and insert them into an envelope ready for mail production. They range is size and speed as well as in the number of items they can handle for inserting. By analyzing your needs a mailing consultant can help in a decision on what to acquire.
When considering this article it became obvious that more questions could be created than answered without some examples and tools. I planned to write a fairly detailed outline of how to look for a device and also seek a way to show a comparison of a human folder inserter and the machine version. Luckily for me someone else has already done a good job on this and instead of trying to refine something new I am going to refer you to their well constructed tools as a beginning introduction to the field of folder inserters.
This well constructed guide gives some good basic information on the tools and also provides a check list which can lead to the start of an analysis which can assist in a decision process.
This page provides a link to a video which shows who might win if a man and a machine were tasked to fold, add an insert and place in envelopes two pieces needed to be mailed.
Done with a humourous approach to what is really a pretty serious subject this presentation provides a good visual outline of what the tasks look like when attacked each way. The machine is not one of the highest capability devices available which helps to make this a more realistic review since the capability can be within the reach of any organization which has the volumes needed to justify some investment.
My thanks to HGI Technologies of Miami Dade Florida for having created and published the linked great material. It answers many questions and I hope they don't mind me pointing others who might be interested in this field from other geographic locations to their resources.