Giving Thanks in 2020

We all know that Thanksgiving will look very different this year. And it’s not just about whether you typically travel or share a meal with certain family members – this pandemic also impacts how we’re able to provide support to our community. Learn what our team is doing to overcome logistical challenges this year.

We all know that Thanksgiving will look very different this year. And it’s not just about whether you typically travel or share a meal with certain family members – this pandemic also impacts how we’re able to provide support to our community. For RELYCO team members, this time of year has always included helping people who wouldn’t otherwise have the means to enjoy a Thanksgiving meal.

For many years, RELYCO has run two different programs for Thanksgiving: 

With large gatherings out of the question and recipients tending to be within high-risk and vulnerable groups, organizers needed to pivot their approach this year. We’re proud to report that creative solutions have been found!

To streamline their approach and reduce contact, St. Thomas More Church will be using a single-source vendor for non-perishable items and provide gift cards for fresh produce. Monetary donations were welcomed, so RELYCO contributed $500 through our Community Service Team & payroll program.

The Dover Thanksgiving Celebration has likewise changed course. Instead of hosting one large dining event, 600 meals will be distributed via delivery this year. This will actually allow us to serve people who couldn’t attend our in-person events in the past, which means reaching more people than we ever have before!

We hope that sharing how our company’s Thanksgiving plans have changed will encourage you to find innovative ways to safely carry on with your traditions. Hopefully, those include a way to give back; there are undoubtedly members of your community who could use a boost, now more than ever. Don’t give up on finding ways to help just because it might be more of a logistical challenge this year. We’ve been inspired by the ways our community has stepped up and we hope you are too.

Nobody yet knows what Thanksgiving 2021 will look like, but (like with everything else) we will carry our 2020 learnings with us. Perhaps we can create an ideal hybrid of old and new solutions.

Meeting in the Park – With a Twist

In this guest blog post, Joe Morgan shares what we’re learning and how our team is connecting during COVID-19. Use our 15 ideas method for your own business!

In this guest blog post, Joe Morgan, RELYCO Senior Advisor, shares what we’re learning and how our team is connecting during COVID-19.

Many of us have met in the park throughout our lives. When we were kids, we might have been playing sports or just hanging and talking with friends. We arrived with an expectation that we would have fun with our friends and maybe even meet some new kids. As we moved toward adulthood, our park trips may have been for a different purpose; however, we still found joy in the open spaces, the conversations and observations of others enjoying this unique open air time together.

With this simple goal in mind, a group of RELYCO team members met in a NH park last month to discuss the changes that are happening around us. The intention was clear: the COVID-19 crisis had taken us away from the office and we needed to see each other, share lunch together and talk about our learnings, both personally and for the future of the business.

Henry Law Park
Henry Law Park, Dover, NH

So, what did we take away from the time together?

1. We created a safe environment in the park.
Masks where appropriate and safe distance was maintained.

2. Our conversations were fantastic.
In-depth stories with lots of humor.

3. We asked for 15 ideas
This was based on a podcast by Simon Sinek, where he referenced that a friend of his suggested asking each employee to bring 15 ideas forward within 48 hours. The point being that 3-5 ideas would likely overlap quite a bit, but having 15 would really push the edges of thinking. 

When we met in the park, we actually talked about over 100 ideas while subsequently putting them in several different basket categories – literally. (We had baskets in the middle of our circle of chairs.) Here were the categories:

CategoryPercentage of Ideas
Are you kidding me
(Sometimes an idea just isn’t good)
(So good that I would invest my own money)
Great idea and let’s go
(On the mark and let’s do it)
Wow, I like it
(Great concept, but needs some research)

4. The COVID-19 crisis has changed how we interact, what we expect from each other and how we view the simplest things in our lives. It has also created new opportunities for many individuals/companies. The themes from our dialogue produced some really great perspectives that validated and expanded our thinking about:

  • Solutions for the home – working from home, teaching from home, dining from home, etc
  • Safety and health – back to work protocol, messaging and signage
  • eCommerce – expanding RELYCO’s online presence with new products
  • Messaging to our customers – increasing frequency through a variety of channels

Final thoughts

We need each other more than ever. Simple connections can bring smiles, help adapt during this crazy time and validate that we are not alone.

How Surveying Our Customers Led to New Opportunities During COVID-19

Like many companies, COVID-19 changed our business. In order to adapt and quickly respond to the needs of our customers, we did a survey. We’re sharing our findings and the actions we took.

Like many companies, COVID-19 changed our business. Beyond the obvious and immediate changes – shifting the majority of our staff to a work-from-home model and implementing new health and safety practices for the staff that needed to remain on-site – we also shifted our 2020 plans and priorities. The ability to adapt and quickly pivot became critical.

Wildly reliable through good times and bad

One of the ways that we achieve our “wildly reliable” mission is through open communication and the relationships we build with our customers and vendors. We leaned on that foundation as the reality of the pandemic set in; our instinct was to reach out to customers to check-in and see how they were doing. During these conversations, we swapped stories about homeschooling our kids, we listened to fears about vulnerable family members and we empathized with the lack of certainty about the future.

Oftentimes, the conversations would turn to their business’s challenges and needs. In some cases, the needs described were easily solved by a product we already offered and we could share that solution.

Customer need: safety signage that can be easily sanitized
Existing solution: REVLAR synthetic paper

Occasionally, customers would mention a challenge that we didn’t have an immediate solution for, like face shields or OSHA compliant floor graphics.

Learning from our customers

In order to get a more clear picture of the demand for these products within our own customer base, we decided to conduct a survey. (Disclaimer: This survey was a small sample size and wasn’t designed to answer questions about any industry. We conducted it to learn more about our own customers.) We began collecting data in mid-May, when many states had stay-at-home orders in place. Much has changed since then, but many things have not. The results are interesting and worth sharing.

Industries Surveyed

The majority of responses came from businesses like print shops, distributors and manufacturers, which were deemed essential and remained open during shutdowns.

As a result, these responses primarily came from companies that remained open and on-site. “Have not closed” was the most common phrase in response to the open-ended question: “What steps are you taking to reopen (or reconfigure) your business to ensure safety?” In the word cloud below, you’ll notice other top mentioned tactics included social distancing measures, face masks and more frequent cleaning.

Our open-ended questions yielded responses that showed varying perspectives on this pandemic, which was no surprise. It suffices to say that attempting to strike a balance between economic impact and employee/customer safety was top of mind for most businesses.

In demand products

As we mentioned earlier, one of the main purposes of this survey was to gain some insight into the demand for products that we were most often hearing about in our anecdotal conversations with customers. Below are the responses to the question: “Does your company need any of the following to reopen?”

Survey Responses Products

From survey to action

These responses confirmed that we should do some research and approach our partners about face shields and floor graphics. (Our expertise with plastic paper and labels aligns us more with those products than you might initially think!) We were able to get them manufactured and now offer face shields and non-slip floor decals on our store. 

We also took the insight gained from this survey and created a COVID Response Catalog, which contains all of our safety solutions (and ideas for how to use them). Do you have any other suggestions for products or services we should offer? Let us know and flip through our COVID Response Catalog.

View RELYCO's COVID Response Catalog Now

Relyco: International Company Gives Local Love

They definitely know their paper, but this Dover-based company also specializes in heart: the strong kind. Continuing a tradition that began in 2004, Relyco has once again partnered with Woodman Park School to provide holiday gifts for local children in need; seventy-seven children from 33 families at last count. You see, when the holidays roll around, … Continue reading “Relyco: International Company Gives Local Love”

Relyco wraps gifts for local families

They definitely know their paper, but this Dover-based company also specializes in heart: the strong kind.

Continuing a tradition that began in 2004, Relyco has once again partnered with Woodman Park School to provide holiday gifts for local children in need; seventy-seven children from 33 families at last count.

You see, when the holidays roll around, Relyco doesn’t just provide for its family, they provide for a broader family—one whose members are identified by the local elementary school nurse. These are families who might not have everything—or even anything—they want or need.

While Relyco employees give back year-round, the need is especially keen around the holidays when the weather gets colder and it seems everyone’s spirits warm up for celebration.

CEO Mike Steinberg remarked, “This is an annual holiday tradition that all our employees’ look forward to, and put hours of effort into making successful. Funded through voluntary payroll donations and company matched, employees shop, wrap, and coordinate pick-up and delivery in time for Christmas.”

Relyco President Bruce Steinberg says, “We are supporting a range of families from those who need just a little extra help to families who have no home in which to celebrate Christmas. By providing gifts we are helping families celebrate without taking on an additional financial burden.”

Since 2004, Relyco estimates they have shopped for more than 350 children, and the need doesn’t stop there. Companies interested in participating in the 2016 Shopping Program are encouraged to contact Relyco at their 121 Broadway Corporate Office in Dover, N.H.

So, while Relyco is a global provider of business printing and payment solutions, it is also a good neighbor right close to home.

GRAPH EXPO 15: Proof that Print Has a Strong Pulse

If, before you attended GRAPH EXPO 15, you had any doubts about whether or not the print industry was in a dead zone you certainly got your answer.

Relyco Graph Expo 2015If you had any doubts about whether or not the print industry was in a dead zone, you certainly got your answer at GRAPH EXPO 15. And it wasn’t just from Ricoh’s aggressive “Print is More Alive Than Ever” campaign.

The show attracted thousands of attendees from all over the world, and when you add in the 550+ exhibitors, that’s a lot people who have print flowing through their veins.

The Pulse of Print at Graph Expo 15

But you can’t just look at the number of people who filled the McCormick Place to get a pulse on the print industry.

The strong pulse comes from the excitement on a young print shop owner’s face when she holds synthetic paper in her hands for the first time and is inspired to offer her customers new and exciting durable applications.

The strong pulse comes from young graphic designers who have a dream of opening up their own print shop and are looking for ways to differentiate themselves with unique specialty papers that their clients will love.

And the pulse comes from seasoned print professionals who are developing new ways for printers to source the right media for specific applications.

If you are looking for new ways to get your blood pumping about print, check out our substrate brochure.


When a Cold Winter’s Day Impacts Your Laser Printer

Static electricity is a common problem on cold winter days when the humidity is low. Check out these tips to fight static and keep your laser printer running in tip-top shape!

When temperatures drop and the air is dry, you get static electricity, which is the nemesis of technology and equipment. While it may be fun to shuffle across the carpet and shock your friend on the ear, this same static electric shock can wreak havoc on your laser printers and digital copiers – affecting printer runnability and print quality.

How do you know if there is a problem?

Static electricity is a common problem on cold winter days when the humidity is low. If your laser printer is producing streaky outputs, you may have a static issue. In order to make the toner stick to the paper, laser printers charge the paper with particles. If the paper has too much static electricity, the particle transfer can be disrupted, which can result in streaking and even paper jamming.

Consider these options to ensure optimal performance:

  1. To prevent problems (paper delivery, sheet alignment, toner adhesion) relating to static electricity, the most important factor is relative humidity. Keep the relative humidity of the printing environment above 50 percent humidity. To do this, install a humidifier or talk to your HVAC technician.
  2. To help clear your paper of static electricity, you can hold a stack of paper firmly in one hand and fan it out a few times with the thumb and index finger of your other hand.  Do this a few times and then immediately place the stack of paper into the printer. If it’s a large commercial printer or you’re doing a big job, you can also use a paper jogger to automate this process.Skip ahead to the 2-minute mark in the video below to see what correct paper fanning looks like:

  1. When new shipments of products (pressure seal forms, carbonless laser paper, synthetic papers) arrive for use in your laser printer or copier, allow the product to acclimate to your print room environment. This will also help alleviate any additional static conditions.
  2. Where and how you store your paper also matters. You should store your paper products in an area with moderate humidity for best results. This will help keep the paper static free.
  3. Make sure your equipment is grounded. This helps your equipment to better handle a static charge and overcome related issues.

If you need more advice and info on how Relyco can help, call us at 800-777-7359 or contact us.

*This blog post was originally published in March 2011 and it was updated on May 29, 2019.