How to select a contract packager


Managing industrial contract packaging effectively demands a tactical approach to the issue. Every product is different as is every project. Although there are as many variables as there are products and companies, there are a few basic steps that every potential contract must go through to ensure the process runs smoothly. The basic steps, before anything, are:

* Make sure your decision to outsource your packaging is the right decision

* Make sure your product, whether auto parts, food, cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, etc, will run through the industrial contract packaging line efficiently and successfully

* Make sure the contract packager has redundant facilities

* Make sure the lines of communication are between the right people so that everyday communications are direct and succinct.

* Make sure there are strong audit provisions imbedded in the contract

Making the decision to outsource to an industrial contract packaging company is the first and perhaps the most important step to see that the undertaking is successful. The decision has to take into account the demands of marketing, finance and logistics. The time it takes to get the product on the shelf is a key component of the make/buy decision; however, competition, capital expense and return on investment must also play a part.

When assessing any of the initial basic steps a further analysis must be made;

* What is the importance of the factor, is it really a demand to have redundancy for example

* What is the likelihood of the outsourcing project failing and what is the fallback

* What would be the effects on the business in the event of failure?

* If it should fail, what are the contingency plans and how quickly can they be brought to the fore?

Once the decision to outsource has been made and all the basics have been answered to everyone’s satisfaction, the next task is to identify the packaging company. There are several things to consider, two of which are of upmost importance;

Location: The packaging company should be located convenient to the location where the product will be produced. The closer the two facilities are to each other the delivery time and the freight charges can be kept to a minimum.

Experience: Remember that you are paying for skills, the rightpackaging company will know how to deliver the services you demand and he will have worked with several customers who produce somewhat similar products to yours.