FIRST Company Certification watermark

FIRST Company Certification singles out a FIRST-driven plant that has implemented its processes and methodologies through compliance practices provisioned and monitored by FTA.

FIRST Company Certification Is About One Word: Confidence.

Be Confident in Your Process.

Gain Customer Confidence in Your Results.

As the only globally recognized mark of flexographic printing excellence, your customers know that when they see this symbol, they can be assured of world-class results. For you, a FIRST Company Certification means confidence in your processes, print quality and consistency, from shift to shift, plant to plant, and pressrun to pressrun. For your customers, it means shelf appeal that they can rely on, through a true printer partnership.

A Printer with FIRST Company Certification Does It All

Is comprised of experts in the areas of color management and process control.
Preserves stable press conditions to deliver consistency and quality.
Embraces industry standard workflows.
Employs a strong, highly skilled workforce.
Behaves as a true print partner, providing guidance, finding solutions, identifying potential pitfalls and establishing clear communication with the entire supply chain.

What Do People Think About FIRST Company Certification?

“The confidence instilled in the employees was a huge bonus. The ability to foresee problems before they get to the press and the efficiency in being able to match proofs the first time the job is run up has been great. The education it has brought to the sales force has been critical to their success as well.”

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“For flexographic printers, FIRST Company Certification carries both meaning and value to Kimberly-Clark, and many other CPCs. We’ve seen true cost and quality transformations occur after this training at participating printers.”

“The benefits of our implementation were clear from the very first project to go through a press, when our operators ran to their numbers and matched the proof on the first pull. The change was noticeable.”

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“The FIRST methodology establishes a statistically repeatable process that affords the printer the ability to identify and control the key print manufacturing inputs to achieve a predictable output. By establishing this workflow, we create a standardizing link between art creation, proof outputs, plate making and printing.”

Obtaining FIRST Company Certification Starts with the Individuals

FIRST Press
Operator Certification

FIRST Press Operator Certification builds flexographic printing experts who will consistently yield the best possible print quality. This expert press operator is proficient in color management, process control, troubleshooting and implementing corrective action procedures to bring systems into control for repeatable, predictable results.

40% of pressroom staff must have FIRST Press Operator Certification.

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FIRST Prepress
Operator Certification

FIRST Prepress Operator Certification creates experts in the field of flexographic prepress (graphics) operations. This expert prepress professional excels in graphic file assembly, preparation and management, image capture, process color calibration, and measuring and controlling print variables throughout the entire workflow.

40% of prepress staff must have FIRST Prepress Operator Certification.

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FIRST Implementation
Specialist Certification

FIRST Implementation Specialist Certification yields experts in flexographic printing support, consultation and communication, who are proficient in communicating the principles and practices of FIRST. It is designed for supervisors, managers and non-production personnel, including suppliers of flexographic products and services.

40% of management/production staff must have FIRST Implementation Specialist Certification.

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FIRST Press
Operator Certification

FIRST Press Operator Certification builds flexographic printing experts who will consistently yield the best possible print quality. This expert press operator is proficient in color management, process control, troubleshooting and implementing corrective action procedures to bring systems into control for repeatable, predictable results.

40% of pressroom staff must have FIRST Press Operator Certification.

Learn More

FIRST Prepress
Operator Certification

FIRST Prepress Operator Certification creates experts in the field of flexographic prepress (graphics) operations. This expert prepress professional excels in graphic file assembly, preparation and management, image capture, process color calibration, and measuring and controlling print variables throughout the entire workflow.

40% of prepress staff must have FIRST Prepress Operator Certification.

Learn More

FIRST Implementation
Specialist Certification

FIRST Implementation Specialist Certification yields experts in flexographic printing support, consultation and communication, who are proficient in communicating the principles and practices of FIRST. It is designed for supervisors, managers and non-production personnel, including suppliers of flexographic products and services.

40% of management/production staff must have FIRST Implementation Specialist Certification.

Learn More

Criteria for FIRST Company Certification

Get the FIRST Company Certification Policies.

Apply for FIRST Company Certification

Ready to get certified? Fill out an application.

About FIRST Methodology

Flexographic Image Reproduction Specifications & Tolerances (FIRST) supports the methodical approach to process control, optimization, fingerprinting, characterization and process improvement as outlined in CGATS TR 012-2003 (Graphic Technology – Color Reproduction and Process Control for Packaging Printing). While each organization may use its own workflow based upon its specific needs, there are certain fundamentals universal to the flexographic printing process. With a firm understanding and application of the FIRST methodology, flexographers can: identify potentially troublesome issues, benchmark press performance, utilize statistical analysis to maintain optimal conditions, perform accurate device calibrations, identify improvement opportunities and preserve stable conditions for repeatable results—all with the end result of satisfactorily reproducing the graphic design.