Overhead Door

Leading garage door manufacturer Overhead Door (formerly Wayne Dalton) saved 80% in publishing time by automating the production of over 1600 installation guides with Typefi Workgroup.

From its inception in Mount Hope, Ohio, in 1954, Overhead Door has grown to become one of the largest door manufacturers in the United States today.

The company offers an extensive range of residential garage doors with a multitude of panel designs, window options, and colours to choose from, and also provides a complete line of innovative door systems for commercial and industrial applications.

Overhead Door has a vast network of over 2000 dealers throughout the United States and Canada, and has international dealers around the globe.

Overhead Door prides itself on its commitment to quality craftsmanship and innovative ideas which far exceed industry standards. The company’s dedication to ingenuity and customer service extends to the production of its extensive range of over 1600 installation guides.

The challenge: Overcoming a time-consuming manual composition process

The company produces two instructional documents for each product shipped from its manufacturing plants in Mount Hope—a full installation guide (available for download as a PDF from the Overhead Door website) and a Quick Start Guide (which is printed and shipped in the box with the hardware).

Covers of Wayne Dalton Installation Guides and Quick Start Guides, two different versions for the same product.

The Quick Start Guides contain an abridged version of the content in the full installation guides, have fewer pictures, and are generally around half the length of the full documents. Both versions are produced and updated as needed, and with 1600 documents on the go, the production cycle is almost constant.

Until 2008, Overhead Door’s installation guides were individually composed in Adobe InDesign. There was no easy way to repurpose common content without intensive rework, and the manual composition process was laborious, time-consuming, inefficient and costly.

An easier, faster, automated publishing workflow

Overhead Door installed Typefi Workgroup to automate its publishing processes in 2008. Despite the complex content and layouts used in the installation guides, only a few minor scripting customisations were required to get the production team up and running with the new platform.

The content of the installation guides is now managed in Typefi Workgroup’s content repository, with authoring taking place in Microsoft Word with the Typefi Writer add-in.

With the click of a button, Typefi automatically composes the content into pre-prepared Adobe InDesign templates and returns completed PDFs within minutes—a full version of the installation guide for the website, and a print-ready abridged version for the Quick Start Guides.

Two pages from a Wayne Dalton installation guide showing diagrams and parts lists for the installation of a garage door.

As part of the Typefi implementation, Overhead Door also undertook analysis of its publishing workflow and identified areas where content could be streamlined and optimised. As a result, the production team simplified and consolidated both images and text, which meant a reduced number of pages for each installation guide and subsequent savings on printing costs.

Jon LaBarba, Technical Drawings and Documents Manager, estimated that producing a document now takes 80% less time, adding that Overhead Door is very pleased with its return on investment and the platform has delivered exactly what it promised.

“It was a big decision at the time, but for the cost there was no other software like Typefi out there,” he said. “I couldn’t do my job without it—I wouldn’t ever go back to the old process.”

A decade after implementing the platform, Overhead Door has retained Typefi as an integral and essential part of the company’s operations, and continues to seek opportunities to expand the platform to other areas of its growing business.

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