Printing and Mailing Partnership

The University continues to build and strengthen its partnerships with industry leaders. We are pleased to report that our partnership with RR Donnelley (RRD) continues to grow. RRD has completed the initial phase of their print portal, the CustomPoint storefront, for NIU use.

Many of the NIU branded items are ready for order in the CustomPoint Catalog. An On-Request form is also available to define your individual print and mail projects. When RRD introduces new products and features, they will highlight those on the CustomPoint’s main page.

RRD is very focused on understanding the scope of work for each area of campus. RRD continues to host a weekly open forum for any faculty or staff member to discuss projects and needs (see the Google Meet link on the right). We encourage you to join, as no invitation is required.

NIU staff is successfully coordinating their printing and mailing projects directly with RRD. Of course, DoIT continues to offer assistance to departments as they further develop their relationship with RRD.

We know there is still a period of adjustment as we continue our transition. To help departments navigate through this transition period, we continue to update the frequently asked questions below.

Contact Information

Pricing and Billing

What is happening with print pricing?New

While there are many facets that are impacting the rising cost of printing, the greatest contributing factor has been the dire situation of the paper industry. Many of you have been hearing of the paper industry challenges and its impact on printers and publishers. Mill closures continue, as do mergers, and acquisitions. Production capacity is diminishing. Raw materials (pulp, chemicals), fuel, and transportation costs are experiencing double- and in some cases triple-digit increases. The price of paper pulp alone has skyrocketed over 35% since the beginning of 2022.

Supply is low, demand is high. Paper mills are struggling to fulfill order. In response, most mills are imposing limits or allocations on paper purchases to prevent stockpiling. Lead times are being extended, most now at 10 to 12 weeks or more. Quick-turn paper orders are clearly a thing of the past. 

Price increase announcements have been coming with much greater frequency than the industry has ever seen before. Additionally, forecasts are predicting more cost increases into the remainder of this, and next year, but fortunately at a slower, steadier pace. However, supply will be increasingly tight with continued extended lead times. 

This increased pressure for the industry is affecting all printers, and RRD is no exception to this. The NIU community is seeing and feeling these increases on the quotes we are receiving from RRD.

In an effort to balance the supply chain impact on NIU, the RRD team is working hard to identify expected levels of paper needed for NIU’s various marketing and communication projects. RRD is also working diligently to define best practices and identify the best facilities within their many plants. Their goal is to provide the most cost effective, fastest response, and highest quality print to NIU.

A continued understanding of the NIU environment and its needs will be a regular point of discussion as you meet and work with the University’s print vendor. We encourage you to plan ahead and think of your projects in terms of the entire scope of work. Share this plan with RRD so they can best serve our campus.

How will I know what my project will cost?

RRD will have two methods for sharing the price of your project. 1) When you select your product in the RRD Storefront and choose the options you desire, you will be presented with the price. 2) When you provide the specifications for your print project, RRD will provide a quote for your approval prior to production.

How will the department be billed?
The billing is expected to be managed similarly to how the IMT print shop bills today. RRD will provide NIU with a summary of the work completed with a breakdown by job and cost center. This will allow NIU to process a journal entry  for each  job listed on that summary.

Timeline

What is the general turn-time for orders?

The type of print project you require will determine the print production time.  In determining when to submit your project to RRD, remember to include the on-campus delivery time from Materials Management once the completed job is delivered to campus.

  • Normal turn times for printed materials is 5-10 business days depending on material availability. If you need to expedite your order, contact NIUSupport@rrd.com.
  • If a new template is requested, please expect 10-15 business days before the template is setup on the site for ordering. 
  • If a new static item is requested, please expect 1-2 business days before item is setup on the site for ordering.

Ordering

How do I place my order?

You can choose from pre-built products or use an order form to provide details on your printing and mailing projects at the RRD Storefront.

Note: RRD has launched the RRD/NIU Storefront with a basic order form (On-Request Form on the site banner) in order for the NIU community to submit print and mail orders. As additional products like NIU Stationery, NIU branded Postcard, and other items that were present on IMT’s Storefront, RRD will add those in the banner section named “Catalog”.

Production

Can I get a hard copy proof?

As a default, RRD offers a digital proof you can view and approve during the ordering process. They will be able to produce a hard copy proof if that is something you require. You can check with RRD regarding the cost and delivery options for hard copy proofs.

Can I still get my paper cut by RRD?
No. If you have documents that you have printed on an AnywherePrinter, or paper you have purchased, RRD will not be able to cut that. If you need documents cut, you should use RRD to print and cut your project.
Can I get bindery only services?
No. RRD is not offering to finish or bind pre-printed documents. If you have projects that require folding, stapling, etc., you should use RRD to print and finish your project.

Mailing

How will I get my project mailed?

RRD will be printing and mailing NIU projects. You will be able to upload your mailing list(s) associated with your project on the RRD Storefront. They will process your mailings in the same manner as DoIT’s IMT has been doing.

How will postage get processed?
RRD will assume the mailing process that DoIT’s IMT department performed in the past.  NIU will be pre-funding postage in care of RRD. After each mailing project is completed, the postage used for your order will be added to the  monthly summary report. Charge-back to your department via a journal entry will happen once a month.
How will I know if I have bad addresses?
Upon request, RRD can provide a report indicating any undeliverable addresses caught prior to production. Returned mail will continue to come to NIU’s Campus Mail.
How will Marketing Mail (formerly Standard, or Bulk Mail) be processed?

Marketing Mail will be processed by RRD on behalf of NIU. You can request that your print order be mailed by RRD at the time you place the order.

Please note:  The print shop relinquished its Marketing Mail permit #120 on January 15, 2022. Any printed materials containing a NIU Standard Mail indicia (permit 120) will no longer be accepted at the USPS.

How will First Class Mail be processed?

NIU’s Campus Mail Services will continue to support and process First Class Mail on behalf of NIU.

For specifics regarding your First Class Mail projects, you may contact Campus Mail Services in the Dorland Building directly:

NIU Campus Mail Services
Mailroom: 815-753-1183
Manager: 815-753-6286, szimmer2@niu.edu
Office Hours: Monday – Friday 8 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Delivery

How will my job be delivered?

Depending on the type of job, and the quantity, RRD will manage delivery to the NIU campus. All projects will come to NIU’s Central Receiving, and then will be dispatched to the building/room indicated on the shipping label.

Can I still pick up my job?
Yes. When you check out of the RRD Storefront, you will be able to choose customer pickup as the delivery method. Your order will ship to NIU’s Central Receiving, and you will be able to pick up your order at the Dorland building. A 15-minute parking space has been added at Dorland for your convenience.

Custom Products

Training

Will training on the use of RRD’s Storefront be available?

RRD will be offering virtual training opportunities once the RRD Storefront launches. We will be sure the campus is notified when those sessions are available. In addition, RRD will prepare a Storefront user’s guide. This will be available once you login to the RRD Storefront. It will also be added to this page when available.

Warehousing

Will there be a charge?

Yes, RRD will charge your cost center for storage of NIU materials. The charge for a pallet of materials will be $11.22/month. Smaller materials will have a Bin charge of $4.81/month.

How long can it be stored?

Standard storage time is 6 months. After that monthly charge will increase. RRD will only store NIU materials for 12 months.

Can I get my inventory returned?

Yes. At any time, you can request your materials to be returned to you. You will be charged for shipping to NIU. Alternatively, at the end of the 12-month timeline, you can request destruction of the materials for a charge of $10.18 per container.

Other Services

Contact Us

RR Donnelley
NIUsupport@rrd.com
Hours: Mon-Fri from 7AM - 7PM CT
Customer Service
Josh Levey
312.256.1907

RRD Storefrontgo.niu.edu/rrd
RRD Storefront User Guide
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