Arandell News + Events

Employee Spotlight – Phil Bartling on Working in the Scheduling Department of a Catalog Printer

After a few months of hiatus due to the pandemic, we are finally back with our Employee Spotlight program and we’ve got a good one this month! Phil Bartling is this month’s featured employee and is a longtime A-Team member who currently works in Arandell’s Scheduling Department.

Catalogs and other print pieces have very tight windows in which they must be mailed due to our clients’ anticipation of their customers’ purchasing behaviors. This date is known as the “In-Home” delivery date and actually comprises of a 3-5 day window around that in-home date in which all pieces within a given program will be delivered. As you can imagine, scheduling literally thousands of projects throughout the course of the year to not only fit that in-home window but also make time for production, binding and any additional finishing or extra services can get pretty hectic.

This is the world that Phil lives in and a world that he is thriving in. It requires working with quite literally every department around the plant in ensuring that this in-home date is met and that we still provide ample time to the production facility to ensure all catalogs within a given program are of the utmost quality.

Phil has had a very interesting career path and was willing to share it with us along with a little more about his background. Here’s more about him and what it’s like to work in the Scheduling Department here at Arandell.


What’s your name, job title and department you work in?

My name is Phil Bartling and I work within the Scheduling Department. My official title is Short Term Production Scheduler.


Tell us more about your background.

I graduated from UW-Stout with a degree in Graphic Communications Management. I graduated just a few months after 9/11 and due to the economic fallout, very few were hiring and I had difficulty landing a job. Luckily after a few months of living with my parents, I was able to find work as the Front Office Manager within a small letterpress shop in the basement of a Pier 1 store in Glendale, WI.

I joined Arandell Corporation in the winter of 2002 as a Client Services Representative (CSR).  After 3 years, I advanced into the Sales Service Representative (SSR) role where I worked for roughly 9 months. After this I was recruited into a new role within the company as the Co-Mail Analyst. The Co-Mail Analyst at the time was assigned to help develop and launch the new Co-Mail Services Area within Arandell which included process workflow, Customer-Connect integration, scheduling and monitoring the day to day procedures within co-mail production. 

After 6 years within this role, an opportunity became available where I was able to transition into the scheduling department for a couple of years. During this time, I left the company for 2 ½ years to pursue an opportunity at Quad as a Plant Scheduler and a Co-mingle Operations Specialist but ultimately chose to come back to Arandell to continue as the Short-Term Production Scheduler of the company.


What’s the number one reason you’ve stayed?

As the short-term scheduler I am involved in all areas of the company which allows me to work closely with many departments and team members throughout the facility. It is in working with these amazing team members that I chose to come back to Arandell and continue to stay with the company after roughly 18+ years. 


What are your day-to-day responsibilities?

My main responsibility at Arandell is monitoring the short-term schedule. I enter production data into our system from the client service team and plan work on each cost center in the pressroom and bindery. Using our PrintFlow system, I set the schedule for work throughout our plant here in Wisconsin. I also facilitate the production meetings in the morning and afternoon for both plants as well. In addition, I am involved in working with sales and the quality department in setting press OK schedules for our clients to arrive and leave the plant. I work with Tim Zurstadt, Arandell’s Long-Term Scheduler, with long-term forecasting and layout design for the plating area and pressroom as well.


What do you enjoy most about your job?

The component I enjoy most with my job is the constant change of direction and being able to be involved with so many departments. In being able to work with nearly every department, it has allowed me to learn a lot about the printing business from maintenance and manufacturing, to project management and procurement, all the way to mailing and delivery of the product. It really has been rewarding to learn from each area when you have such incredibly knowledgeable peers.


What do you like to do for fun outside of work?

With having two very active boys, my hobbies consist of football, basketball, hockey, and baseball games. When I am not running around to each of these events, I enjoy spending time with my family going to and watching Brewers and Packers games. When I get free time aside from all that, I try to do some home brewing. With work from home practices put in place at Arandell and being basically quarantined on nights and weekends, I’ve actually gotten back into home brewing and brewed a few batches recently.


Do you have a favorite vending machine snack/drink?

My usual go-to if needed is a bag of chips out of the vending machine. I try to steer away from the vending drinks because I usually have 4 cups of coffee by the time I walk in the door in the morning.


Favorite music to listen to? Do you have a favorite band/artist?

I really enjoy rock music but can tolerate most music of today. There is some stuff that my kids put on that I really do not know how they got a record contract. My favorite band is Pearl Jam. I have seen them in concert over 20 times since 1994 and have traveled around the country multiple times to see them play.


Favorite TV show or movie of all time?

I enjoy a lot of the big series that sadly have now finished. Shows like Game of Thrones, Breaking Bad, The Walking Dead and Big Bang Theory are what I have invested most my time in. I still am drawn to the movie classics such as Tommy Boy, Happy Gilmore and The Wedding Singer.


Final Question: How do you define success?

I see success in knowing the production schedule we put together is maximizing employee talents and machine efficiency to meet client in-home dates. Making a positive impact on a person’s life and knowing I put a smile on their face is what I see as personal success for myself.

That’s it for this month’s Employee Spotlight! For past Spotlights, feel free to check out our Company News page. For everything else, be sure to stay tuned into our News & Events page.