1. What sorts of projects does GMC Publications do?
  2. How long will it take to complete my project?
  3. What is an editorial review? A design review?
  4. What do your production services cover?
  5. How much do your services cost? How does billing work?
  6. How rigid is the schedule I received from my creative team?

1. What sorts of projects does GMC Publications do?

Everything we produce is a custom product based on and tailored to our clients’ needs. We produce all types of publications, including but not limited to

  • ads (newspapers, magazines, web sites)
  • annual reports
  • booklets
  • brochures
  • cards and invitations
  • certificates
  • course catalogs
  • fundraising mailers
  • magazines
  • newsletters
  • postcards
  • posters and banners
  • viewbooks and other recruitment materials

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2. How long will it take to complete my project?

We generally ask for six weeks’ turnaround time from receipt of copy to delivery. Simple publications and revisions of previously printed pieces may take less time; elaborate pieces—especially those requiring additional outside services, such as photography—take more time. Major viewbooks or complex projects with significant content or concept development can take several months. When our commitments to clients allow, we can often turn around jobs more quickly than the guidelines above suggest.

Please contact Anne Egger (1-4880; a-egger@northwestern.edu) to discuss your scheduling needs.

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3. What is an editorial review? A design review?

If you produce a job in-house or with a freelance designer, our editors can provide editorial reviews. This means that they can edit your manuscripts electronically or on paper, proofread your laid-out pages, or simply “audit” the effectiveness of a publication’s content. An investment of a few hundred dollars (editorial reviews of most jobs take less than 15 hours) can ensure that your text conforms to editorial standards and reflects well on your department and the University. Similarly, our designers can review the effectiveness of the graphic content of publications that you produce with freelancers or on your own.

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4. What do your production services cover?

We produce hundreds of publications a year using many printers across the Chicago area. This volume gives us the purchasing power to provide you (and the University) with cost-effective prices for high-quality print production. Our production manager obtains competitive bids for each job, then chooses the best printer based on price, ability to handle the specifications of the piece, and scheduled delivery date. A minimal surcharge applies.

As a rule, University Relations only handles jobs that are printed through our office. By taking care of the printing, our production experts free you to concentrate on the important details of reaching your audience.

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5. How much do your services cost? How does billing work?

The University’s central administration subsidizes our editorial and design services to a large extent. Shortly after you come to GMC with a project request, we provide you with a written estimate that includes projected editorial and design hours as well as outside costs (printing, photography, etc.).

When your project is ready to be printed, you will receive a Request for Chart String that outlines the costs to be charged to your account. Please e-mail your chart string to your editor or the senior publications assistant as promptly as possible.

All projects delivered by July 31 are billed to the current fiscal year. Projects delivered after that date are billed to the following fiscal year.

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6. How rigid is the schedule I received from my creative team?

Meeting deadlines during the production process is critical to a project’s overall success. Time is built in at all phases for each step; if deadlines are missed at the beginning, it is likely that the delivery date may be delayed.

Schedules are often adjusted during the process, but it should be understood that the more deadlines are pushed, the more urgent the project becomes when it is sent to the printer. At that point problems become more costly to solve. If your delivery date is critical, your project will be best served by a strict adherence to all deadlines. 

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