Produce quotations for printed products

Business Sectors (Suites): Print Administration
Developed by: Improve
Approved on: 30 Mar 2020


This standard would be viewed as an introductory unit for entrants to the industry. The aim is to give learners a basis of the tasks, costs, production issues and the use of outworkers.

The range of print processes the standard covers is:

  • Lithography
  • Flexography
  • Gravure
  • Die Stamping
  • Screen Process
  • Digital Printing

There may be a situation where some learners work in a "trade house". In this instance estimates/quotations will only apply to products produced by your company.

Nowadays estimators get enquiries from many sources, from the web, email, telephone and more traditionally from sales representatives and in-house customer service. In all cases, situations will arise where the information supplied will not be accurate. Estimators have to be aware of the production processes to be able to spot any inaccuracies at an early stage and refer the enquiry back to source. Other issues that may occur are that supplied files can be presented in different formats and conversion techniques will have to be employed to make them print ready. Charges for issues like that have to be applied.

The vast majority of printers/outworkers, now have Management Information Systems (MIS) where standard costs are built in to the estimating programme, such as machine rates, house substrate prices, common substrate prices, consumable prices, plate prices, and in some cases pre agreed prices with outworkers for common production tasks. Although working out prices can be a fairly simple task using an MIS, there are other considerations to factor in such as the best way to produce a job, mainly for printing and finishing. It is the duty of the estimator to supply the client with the best possible price in order to secure the business.   Sometimes there are various ways to produce a job and the estimator has to have product knowledge, be aware of machine capabilities and sometimes a job can be produced across more than one machine. Cognisance must be taken of how a job may be finished as this can have a bearing on the way the printing element of the job may be produced.

With some jobs there may be legal issues to consider and the estimator has to be aware of those. The knowledge required for this standard is therefore important and covers a wide range of topics.

Performance criteria

You must be able to:

  1. review and clarify information received from customers to produce quotations
  2. plan production stages and sequences required to meet specifications
  3. obtain customer prices for products and quantity requested plus any run-on quantities following company estimating procedures
  4. obtain approval for quotations before forwarding to customers following standard operating procedures
  5. produce quotations following standard operating procedures
  6. respond to any queries from customers, providing explanations and advice as required
  7. provide quotations to customers in formats required following standard operating procedures
  8. provide customers with estimated delivery times following standard operating procedures
  9. maintain records of quotations, including notes of any additional or optional items discussed

Knowledge and Understanding

You need to know and understand:

  1. copyright
  2. ownership of images
  3. confidentiality
  4. safe handling of customer material
  5. how to communicate with internal and external customers
  6. workplace policies at your company
  7. how to identify and assess printing options
  8. how to identify and assess finishing options
  9. law of contract
  10. materials used in the printing process and their purpose
  11. proofing


This standard is designed for the role of "Junior Estimator". Learners will essentially be dealing with, what would be referred to as basic estimates/quotations. This will give them appreciation of the competencies and knowledge required before moving on to more complex estimates/quotations.

Areas that will require specific attention:

  • possible methods of working
  • production stages and sequence required
  • outwork required
  • what the customer has agreed to supply
  • delivery date
  • delivery requirements
  • any critical issues affecting cost and/or working

Scope Performance

Scope Knowledge





Links To Other NOS

External Links

Version Number


Indicative Review Date

30 Mar 2020





Originating Organisation


Original URN


Relevant Occupations

Printers, Printing Machine Minders and Assistants, Printing Trades

SOC Code



Print; production; costing; estimating; sales; account; management