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CR-What? The Difference Between CR80 and CR100 ID Cards

Posted by Dan Ryan on Jan 11, 2018 3:00:00 PM

It's something you'll see often if you're shopping for new ID cards: the letters "CR" followed by a dash and a two- or three-digit number.

Those unfamiliar with ID cards probably see that collection of characters and assume it's some kind of branding tool or the name of a specific product.

However, the CR numbers are actually something much more basic: they denote the size of the ID credentials to which they are assigned.

Similar to how an XL men's dress shirt will always have the same sleeve length and how you know exactly how many ounces of liquid are in your "venti" coffee, "CR-" is a way to inform shoppers about the exact dimensions of an ID credential.

There are several different sizes of ID credential, but this post will focus on the two most popular sizes:

CR80 and CR100.

Learn more about CR80 and CR100 ID cards

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Topics: card tips, ID cards, government ID cards, student id cards, employee badges

Why Should You Laminate Your ID Cards?

Posted by Dan Ryan on Nov 29, 2017 1:30:00 PM

Choosing between laminated ID cards and standard ID cards is one of the first decisions you must make when selecting new card stock for an ID program.

Why, you ask? 

Because the results of that debate are going to determine what you do with a variety of other important aspects of your program,  including:

  • What kind of ID card printer you need
  • Your cost for ID card supplies
  • Whether or not you need a card-carrying accessory
Initially, many people see the higher cost of a lamination-enabled card printer or see the burden of buying a laminating machine with pouches and are put off by the idea of lamination.

"We'll just be careful with the cards," they think.

However, laminating your ID cards offers a number of benefits to both your ID program and your organization as a whole. Some are obvious. Some are a little more obscure. 

But all three will have your organization wondering why it didn't make the switch to laminated cards sooner.

Learn more about how you'll benefit from using laminated ID cards

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Topics: card tips, ID cards, government ID cards, ID card printers, student id cards, employee badges, laminated ID cards, laminating pouches

3 Questions to Ask About Your New School ID Badge Program

Posted by Dan Ryan on Jun 7, 2017 2:00:00 PM

For many educational institutions, the end of the school year is a time to reflect on the year gone by, wrap up any loose ends and make plans for the "off" months ahead.

However, the end of the school year is also budgeting season, making it the perfect time for schools to plan for upcoming expenses, both large and small.

This makes school budgeting season the perfect time to think about investing in a school ID card program, whether it's an overhaul of your existing solution or implementing student or employee ID badges for the first time.

While an investment in an ID program isn't going to completely blow the budget like a new gym floor or repairs to the HVAC system might, creating a new identification badge program will require careful planning and investment.

In order to get the most efficient and effective badging system possible, it's understand what options you have moving forward and how those options mesh with your school's needs.

When it comes to school ID badges, don't just wing it

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Topics: ID cards, education, student id cards, school ID tips, school identification

3 Reasons Your School Should Invest in a Printer Support Plan

Posted by Dan Ryan on May 9, 2017 1:30:00 PM

Lets's be honest: service plans have a bad reputation, and it's not really fair.

Service plans or support contracts are often viewed as unnecessary throw-ins, added on at the end of a transaction by a greedy salesperson who's looking to pad his or her bottom line.

"Say, would you like to add a two-year contract to that blender for only $44.99? It covers everything!"

As a society obsessed with gadgets and the latest technologies, service plans have become ubiquitous, and with that ubiquity has come a level of annoyance: "no, I don't want that, just ring me up so I can go home."

However, there's a level of investment where the burden of the additional cost associated with a service plan is outweighed by the benefits and peace of mind that service plan provides.

Cars, home appliances and large machinery are common items where a service plan or extended warranty just makes sense: you paid so much for the thing that you want to make sure it's not going to die after a few months.

A school probably isn't investing in a new six-burner range any time soon, but many schools do make an investment in a valuable piece of machinery that could benefit from a service plan: an ID card printer.

More than just a throw-in...

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Topics: ID card printers, student id cards, tech support, printer support, schools

How to Quickly Add Security to Your ID Cards with Holographic Overlays

Posted by Dan Ryan on Aug 16, 2016 10:30:00 AM

When it comes to ID card security, many people take a pretty casual stance.

"Eh," they think. "It's not like I'm creating some top-secret government card or something. Why do I need security?"

While it's true that some industries require more security than others, any organization issuing ID credentials should take steps to protect those cards against counterfeiting.

The risks of not protecting certain kinds of credentials, like the aforementioned government cards, drivers' licenses, passports and bank cards, are pretty obvious: allowing those credentials to be counterfeited would be opening the door (literally) to some huge security risks.

However, even smaller, less strict organizations should be considering the harm that can come from a counterfeit credential:

  • If you're a small food market that issues loyalty cards to your best customers, how would they feel if anyone could duplicate the card and get the same discount?
  • If you're a high school that issues credentials that give students free entry to a local museum, what happens to your school's reputation if a non-student duplicates the card to get free entry, then causes trouble?
  • If you're a mid-sized organization that issues standard employee badges, how safe will your employees feel knowing anyone could copy their credentials?

From security, peace-of-mind and insurance perspectives, it makes sense to create secure ID cards. 

But if you're an organization that has already issued dozens of credentials, what are you supposed to do? Bite the bullet and reissue new cards to all employees?


You can use a holographic overlay, a product that provides anti-counterfeiting measures without having to issue new credentials.

Holographic overlays offer effective, visual ID card security

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Topics: card tips, ID cards, card security, government ID cards, student id cards, employee badges, holographic overlays

How to Buy ID Cards: 5 Questions to Ask Before Choosing Your Card Type

Posted by Dan Ryan on Aug 5, 2016 11:30:00 AM

Your mission: You need to buy ID cards.

Your company has decided to start an identification program by issuing employee badges, and you've been given the honor of figuring out how to get it done.  

Where do you begin?

If you're like most people these days, you head to the Internet. However, typing "ID cards" into Google will present you with an overwhelming number of terms and options.

CR80, mils, CR100, composite, laminate, holographic foil, overlays...

You never knew there were so many choices for creating what you've always viewed as just a small piece of plastic.

Don't be overwhelmed!

Yes, there are tons of options when it comes to choosing the kind of card you'll be using for your ID program.

However, you can narrow your search down to the few cards that meet your needs by asking a series of key questions about what you're trying to get out of your ID program.

We've compiled a list of these key questions, which are designed to help you determine what criteria are most important to you. These important details are what will lead you to that perfect ID card, and to a sense of "mission accomplished."

ID cards? We've got questions, and you've got answers.

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Topics: card tips, ID cards, student id cards, employee badges

3 Ways for Colleges to Prepare for Student ID Card Season

Posted by Dan Ryan on Jun 1, 2016 4:30:00 PM

It's the beginning of June, and you can feel summer coming. Colleges and universities have already ended classes for the year, with high schools, middle schools and elementary schools not far behind.

At this time of year, the thoughts of most people turn towards beaches, cold drinks, pools and beautiful weather...

...unless you work in the ID card office of a college.

If that's case, you probably have one thought crossing your mind more than all the rest:

"Uh oh. The new students are coming."

Yes, summer means college orientation season, when thousands of new students flock to campuses across the country eager to get those first few days of college experience under their belts.

While some orientations occur later in the summer and some schools leave their ID badging until the first week of school in the fall, the waves of students beginning orientation usually signal the beginning of student ID card printing season.

For many schools, the student ID card is the center of the college universe: cards are used to identify students (duh), grant access to classrooms and dormitories, pay for meals and more.

Simply put, a solid student ID card program is key to a great campus experience for your students.

With student ID badging season rapidly approaching, it's important to make sure your school's student ID card program is ready to handle the new load of students.

We've compiled a list of three steps you can take to make sure your school is ready to welcome its newest batch of students, and to ensure that your summer badging operations go off without a hitch.

How can you ensure your student ID card operation is ready?

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Topics: card tips, education, id card programs, student id cards

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