ISTA Testing Standards: What They Are and Why They Matter

By Katie Exum

ISTA Testing Standards: What They Are and Why They Matter

  • August 27, 2020

ISTA Testing Standards: What They Are and Why They Matter

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The International Safe Transit Association, or ISTA, is an organization that creates standards for packaging design to ensure the safe arrival of the package’s contents. ISTA continually tests its standards to ensure packaging designs can withstand harsh shipping conditions based on the package’s size, weight, and potential transportation hazards like temperature, vibrations, drops, horizontal impacts, compression, and other factors. 

As a result of ISTA’s work, product manufacturers gain several advantages:

  • Reduced losses due to damage incurred in transport
  • Higher product quality
  • Less waste
  • Greater customer satisfaction

Product manufacturers can use ISTA’s extensive research and testing when designing their packaging and improving the way products reach their end destination. 

ISTA’s Role in Package Design

When a part or product leaves the factory, the manufacturer needs to feel confident that the product will reach the next stop on the supply chain in perfect condition. Otherwise, they risk having the damaged product returned to their factory, which results in a monetary loss and wasted resources. 

Because ISTA puts products and packaging through extreme tests, companies often turn to their standards to guide product-package design. The ultimate goal is for the package to provide protection during transit, and ISTA provides the testing to account for a multitude of hazards that many manufacturers may not be aware of or have no way of testing for themselves.

When using ISTA data and research, companies can design more effective and efficient packaging and reduce costs associated with transportation-related losses. When products arrive in pristine condition, reputations and bottom lines alike will soar.

Simplifying Package Requirements with SDM

An ongoing challenge for manufacturers is managing different packaging specs for different products and buyers. Not only do packages need to meet ISTA standards, but they may also vary according to distributor requirements. Legacy systems only complicate package spec management, as they often take the form of inefficient spreadsheets and static documents that may not be up-to-date with the latest developments.

Specification Data Management™ (SDM™) fills in gaps left behind by legacy systems via organizing data at the spec level, including package design details. Companies can rely on SDM as a single source of truth that is shared, accessed, and updated by multiple employees across the organization. Package data can be viewed by any supply chain stakeholder to ensure consistency, compliance, and to confirm you have the most up-to-date information available.

How Specright Supports Digitized Package Design

Specright’s SDM platform is improving the way companies manage package design by providing DNA-level insight into every product. The first and only software of its kind, Specright enables manufacturers to digitize their product line using customizable templates that capture the important details for all aspects of a product. Tie your unique package requirements for each product and distributor or customer into the platform for fluid transportation.

As a result, companies gain a standard way of organizing packaging data, including ISTA control standards. If ISTA standards change, then companies can make simple updates in their SDM platform to ensure ongoing compliance. 

Download our ebook to learn more about how Specright streamlines package design for manufacturers.