How to Run a Smooth Packaging Process
Having a well thought-out and time-tested process in place can make a huge difference just about anywhere. Restaurant servers, hotel front desk staff, custodians – everyone benefits from having a process that they follow. For those of use that work in packaging, it’s no different! In fact, having that process in place could be the difference between saving cash and wasting it.
Chances are, you don’t have a process really written out anywhere, but you have one that you always follow, because it’s just what you’ve been doing and it seems to work just fine. However, taking the time to look into that process might be really eye-opening!
Here’s your plan for creating a packaging process that’s as smooth and lean as possible.
Put pen to paper and draw out your steps.
Yes, we said draw! Or perhaps a list works best for you. Either way, making a physical copy of your process as you walk through it will help immensely. Take notes on each step showing:
- How it’s currently done
- Who the point person is
- Main products & tools used
- How much time the step takes to complete
- Anything you notice while watching
Talk to someone at each step. What could be done better?
Someone who completes that step every day is going to be the most knowledgeable on what improvements could be made. However, it’s also possible that your point person is so close to the task, it’s hard to take a step back and see that there are things happening that could be fixed or updated. So, talk to people, but also watch carefully. Where could time, materials or staff be improved?
Take a close look at your materials, tools and machinery.
There’s almost always something new and exciting in the world of packaging materials, tools and machinery, and there are many different ways to go about looking for improvements. The type and cost of materials, the amount of time and staff needed to run tools and machinery, how much space your materials take up in your warehouse…opportunities for money saving are everywhere. Interested in learning more? Get our Guide to Saving Money on Packaging.
Does your staff really know how to run everything efficiently?
Do you ever learn that your new phone does something cool, months or even a year after you got it? You think you know everything about how to use it, but then suddenly there’s this one thing you learn that makes it better. That’s exactly how packaging is! It’s so easy to use, for instance, too much paper packaging in the box, or too much tape when you only need one strip, or give the stretch wrapping machine just 2 extra unnecessary rotations without knowing it. All of this adds up so quickly! All staff should be trained on exactly how to use the material or machines they’ll be working with.