Data is being used by companies, both large and small, to improve their overall business strategies. For example, companies use data to learn more about consumer desires to innovate new products, to create a marketing message that resonates with their target audience, and to improve their business operations and processes, thus making them more efficient. 

One of the process improvements that can be dramatically improved is your packaging — particularly when it comes to the key performance indicators (KPIs) that revolve around said process. 

Let’s look at how you can use data to improve your KPIs, especially by using a packaging and label and artwork management software.

Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) Improved Through Data Management

1.Time to Market 

Timing is everything when it comes to getting your products out on the shelves and into consumer’s shopping carts where they belong. Consumers expect packaging changes to be made in 24 hours — the reality is that it takes, on average, 198 days to make changes to a label. See the dissonance here between consumer expectations and packaging reality? 

Thus speed-to-market is mission critical when it comes to grabbing the consumer’s attention and setting yourself apart from the competition. The “First Moment of Truth” is crucial– it’s what lures a consumer in to purchase your product… don’t let your competitor steal your spotlight.

If your product’s go-to-market strategy is slower than the other brands fighting for spots on store shelves, you’re giving them a clear advantage in more ways than one. 

For starters, competition will establish itself as an industry leader, leaving you and your brand in the dust — especially if your competitor is rolling out new products while your company is still focusing on the latest label and artwork change. This also enables them to gain market share — even if the product is substandard to yours, If that happens, you’ll have to spend resources on figuring out how to convince consumers to switch brands (which isn’t always easy). 

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How do you improve your overall speed-to-market? Identify the bottlenecks in the process and determine how long these bottlenecks take.  

With tools like Esko’s WebCenter, you can do just that. 

WebCenter allows you to create can create extensive reports for any given package you’ve designed. These reports will help you find time-wasting bottlenecks that are keeping you from beating your competition to market. 

For example, let’s say you created a report and noted that there was a significant time gap between when your label and artwork moved from the graphic designer to the quality assurance (QA) team.  To countermeasure this problem, you could create an automated workflow that ensures that once the design team is done with their task, it goes directly to QA with no lag time (hint: you can also use software — like WebCenter — which makes collaborating and assigning tasks simple and easy).

2. Amount of Revisions

Audit trails can supply a lot of valuable data when it comes to your packaging process. 

For example, you may turn to your audit trail after a packaging project is complete, only to discover that there were multiple back and forths between the brand manager and the graphics department to get the appropriate approvals needed for the label and artwork design.  In other words, you’re having to go through a ton of revisions before getting final approval. 

With this knowledge, you can now come up with ways to limit the number of revisions. For example, you could have the graphics department more involved in the initial brand strategy meetings to make sure they are getting the targeting, branding, and messaging right with the designs the first-time. Or you could use 3D packaging software that helps create virtual prototypes, alleviating the time spent on physical prototypes. Either way, the audit trail helps you determine 

3. Total Number of Packaging Projects

If you’re managing multiple brands and, therefore, numerous packaging projects for each, it can be challenging to keep track of everything. 

With packaging management software, you can see all those projects in an orderly queue.

It may seem like a simple thing, but being able to see at a glance all your upcoming projects and due dates allows you to effectively determine and allocate resources and new projects to your team.

In short, having a bird’s eye overview on the current workload allows you to make sure work is evenly distributed throughout your team and provides the visibility needed for you to report to the executive team on what is being done and when they can expect things complete.

Looking for Label and Artwork Management Software to Improve Your Process? 

Businesses that are always looking to improve — that are never satisfied — are the ones that surpass the competition and dominate the market. 

By integrating multiple packaging solutions into your operations, your packaging team will improve their output while reducing their errors. In other words, you’ll optimize your efficiency.  

Artios CAD – Structural design software for brand packaging with tools focused on product development and virtual prototyping.

Studio – Easily turn your brand’s product designs into beautiful 3D images — as well as the option of viewing them in virtual reality. 

WebCenter – a powerful and user-friendly web-based platform that focuses on all aspects of successful packaging.

Cape Pack – palletization software that will help you determine the best packaging product size, case count, case size, and pallet load.

To learn more about how these solutions and Esko can help propel your packaging strategies, contact them today!

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