How to Optimize Packaging

The ever evolving packaging industry is no more about product packaging in a box or a carton. It is going through a transformation. It is a well planned system which prepares for the goods safe movement across the supply chain in the most effective manner with cost saving as one of its important goals. For any business it plays a pivotal role.

Packaging Optimization” means using ‘Smart Packaging’ that is purposely being designed to Contain, Communicate and Protect your product while it transit from a manufacturer, warehouse or in-store fulfillment center to a final destination.

The aforesaid definition makes it sound as a simple term, but once you start to peel back the layers, the amount of detail and engineering that goes behind the process becomes more evident.

The best-in-class packaging systems have been well thought out and engineered to optimize the packaging across every touch point in the supply chain–from origin to destination, and ultimately to your front step.

The packaging decision in most of the companies is being under the purview of designers and marketing experts who understands the aesthetic demand of the market and very well knows how to ‘make their product stand out on the shelves. Unfortunately, the strategy which is solely focused on How to drive sales and imprint brand in the mind of the consumers’, may compromise with the supply chain cost effectiveness and packaging optimization. Here, Supply Chain and Packaging managers plays a crucial role, they can either let go this opportunity or can educate the sales and marketing managers on the ‘Importance of Structural Packaging Optimization’ and the benefits being attached to it.

The smart way is to apply technique design for distribution which puts supply chain perspective

in the front seat and makes it part of development process early on. The concept makes inclusion of both product and packaging requirement needed to survive during transits.

To achieve packaging optimization, there are certain parameters we need to follow that will help us to save money by not wasting it on the unnecessary material which is being utilized in the process of creating a more sustainable package.

  • Opt for the ‘Right Packaging Material’, to understand this we have to understand the product hence ‘Define and Analyze the Product & the Environment’ , once we understand the vulnerability of the product it becomes easy to decide what material should be used for packaging. The product travel through various stages before it reaches the final destination, while doing so it is exposed to various environmental conditions, determining what conditions your product will witness during transit. This will help you to decide the right primary and further on the secondary and tertiary packaging needed for it. The right material & amount of packaging will help your product withstand harsh environmental conditions like turbulence, humidity, manual handling etc.
  • Opt for the ‘Right Package Design’, before making a final call on the package design, there are few innately important points which has to be answered and taken into consideration like: Will your packaging be reused?, Is your material supplier capable to deliver the packaging as per your design specifications ? Can you achieve the right design and manufacturing fit? What are the long term packaging needs of the product, if any? Will your current manufacturing capabilities support your design? and finally the most important one, ‘Does your Design compliment your Supply chain’. Beautiful and artistic shapes make your product stand out but it impact the supply chain cost. You have to consider the extra transportation and storage cost a design will add.

The benefits of an optimized packaging drain down through the entire distribution cycle. You will be amazed on the kind of results you can achieve when these optimizations are integrated with Product Design.

  • Test the Designed Packaging Prototype, once you are ready with the packaging, test the design on various environmental conditions your product will be exposed to. Check if the design withstands the test and if there is a scope of further improvement in design and
  • Finally, Opt for the ‘Right Amount of Protection”, one of the biggest deed which packaging optimization has to accomplishes is ‘Product Protection’. If your product is already designed to be sturdy, it will need minimal (or no) packaging. But if your product is innately fragile or has unique requirements especially during distribution, it may require extra packaging. Right amount of package protection, avoid product damage. Damage during transport can wreak havoc on supply chain costs and can have detrimental service implications.

Packaging optimization is important, you will be surprised to know, how even a small amount of package size reduction, as miniscule as a  inch can seep down in your supply chain and can end up saving a huge amount of money for you. You have an opportunity in disguise, waiting for you to unravel it.

Companies like IKEA, Amazon etc. can’t stop obsessing about the benefits they have achieved through optimizing their Packaging.

“Money Isn’t the Only Green Benefit of Packaging Optimization, Another intangible benefit of these efficiencies is Sustainability”.

How can Team Fasiculus help?

Fasiculus means Packaging in Latin, Team fasiculus is trained to provide expert guidance and services in the field of Smart Sourcing and Optimization. Contact them for your specific needs at info@fasiculus.com or call us at +971 50 281 4039, +44 7793 267138, +91 999 904 4534

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