Do you define and maintain a set of standard platform sizes?
Components can come in multiple sizes and shapes and the challenge is how these can be controlled to an optimum number. Your approach to this will be heavily impacted by your supply chain design.
- If you have a few global or regional factories, rationalisation can be targeted at a local level.
- If you have a high number of factories supplying multiple dose forms to many markets, you will be presented with a significant number of inter-dependencies making rationalisation more challenging.
- If you purchase finished products from 3rd parties, you may be restricted to each supplier’s standards.
Many companies will have combinations of all of the above, so you approach may be global, regional or by product/supply chain.
For printed packaging components, the challenge is to reduce the range down to the smallest practical number of profiles. This gives less profiles to manage and will aid line change-overs. It is also a pre-requisite for most types of late customisation.
Platform sizes are normally driven by the size of primary components and so it is often best to start with a rationalisation of primary component sizes and shapes to reach an optimum range of platforms.
For other components, such as spoons and measuring cups, try to rationalise to the minimum number of variants.
This is the sixth of a series of 20 blogs giving a view of methods to deal with packaging complexity. Please help me improve the thinking by adding your comments and share this with others who may have a view.