Walk into any retail outlet and you will see a plethora of packaging options to choose from. For the average consumer, this array is a living kaleidoscope of color funneling their interests in the direction that is the right choice for them. But for the packaging engineer, it’s an opportunity to review, analyze and recommend ways to reduce costs and increase profits through gaining control over packaging specifications. Today we offer five sure-fire ways for packaging engineers to reduce packaging related costs. Some of them might surprise you.
1. Look for Existing Packaging Options:
Large consumer products companies with multiple product lines have hundreds, if not thousands of packaging SKUs. Every new product requires a new package. By identifying an existing packaging option that can be used for the new product, companies can save money on packaging design and through ordering higher volumes of fewer SKUs.
2. Consolidate Similar or Duplicate SKUs:
Acquisitions of companies offering similar or complimentary product lines often means an immediate proliferation of SKUs in the system. Identifying duplicate or similar SKUs offers a perfect opportunity for consolidation and immediate cost reductions, making acquisitions even more valuable.
3. Stop Over-Packaging Waste:
While every producer wants to ensure their product makes it to market without any damage, sometimes the packaging overwhelms the product in content and value. By identifying over-packaged items, you can reduce your total packaging cost and help the environment.
4. Perform Routine Audits:
Recalls due to packaging failures or labeling mistakes are common and extremely expensive for all stakeholders. They are often the result of the incorrect content or outdated labels. Or a supplier may have changed your box spec without providing notification of doing so. Routine audits of your specifications versus actual labels and packaging can avert potential costly recalls.
5. Use an Intelligent Specification Management Platform:
Today, many specifications are managed through disparate systems and solutions, such as email, spreadsheets, binders and ERP systems. These methods result in SKU proliferation, higher costs, greater business risk, and abundant efficiencies throughout the value chain. By putting all your packaging specs into an intelligent platform, you can develop, store, and easily share them both internally and externally. Additionally, you can analyze them to improve efficiency and reduce costs associated with packaging bids, improving operations, reducing returns, and protect your brand.
Putting just a few of these tips to use in your company can reduce time and costs associated with packaging. While we can’t promise a raise or bonus, implementing our tips is bound to make a significant impact in your company.
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