Packnomics = The Economics of Packaging Design and Size
Packnomics = A packaging consulting firm dedicated to minimizing the overall landed costs of products. An integrated and systematic approach to more intelligent product and packaging design, smarter testing, procurement engineering, damage reduction, consumer ease-of-use, environmentally responsible material selection, and material handling guidance, all leads to lower costs and increased customer satisfaction.
Kevin Howard is the principal consultant and owner of Packnomics LLC. Kevin is one of the few people in the world with both BS and MS degrees in Packaging (Michigan State University). After more than 20 years of working with Fortune 500 companies, Kevin began Packnomics in 2005. When appropriate, Kevin enlists other packaging consultants, test labs, and packaging suppliers to attain the best results in the least amount of time possible. Kevin's well documented successes in saving clients millions of dollars in packaging, shipping and damage costs come from a systematic approach of assessing a supply chain, comparing current test methods to real life inputs, product design, packaging design and material handling methods, and then shows management how these can all be re-balalnced to attain lower costs.
Beyond consulting directly to companies (most often, manufacturers and freight forwarders), Kevin has also worked as an expert witness, determining why and how packaging failed and led to bodily injuries. In each and every case Kevin has written his initial findings, a settlement has taken place shortly there after. Perhaps surprisingly, no matter the type of product or package involved, the failures have come from 3 basic areas: The designer not knowing the typical supply chain inputs the package must withstand, so, therefore, not designing appropriately; Inappropriate test levels as a result of not knowing typical inputs found in distribution, therefore leading to inadequate design; Not verifying specifications are being met by suppliers of the design. In other words, you can't design correctly if you don't know what you're designing for, you can't test designs correctly if the tests don't replicate the inputs found in distribution, and, even if you get the design and tests correct, the design may fail if the materials used aren't the quality requested of the supplier. These are all foreseeable problems and there's little excuse as to why consumers and material handlers should suffer severe injuries as a result of failed packaging designs.
With 20 years of working for Fortune 500 companies and consulting since 2005, plus teaching senior level classes at two schools of packaging, and having both BS and MS degrees in Packaging, Kevin Howard is uniquely qualified to help reduce packaging related logistics costs. Several of Kevin's projects have become the largest-ever packaging savings for his clients.
Every company is different. The combination of product design, packaging, test methods, material handling and supply chain are never the same for two different companies. Some companies want only a simple assessment of a single package, with no on-site visit. Though this has been done, it's not the most likely way to find the largest cost reduction opportunities.
Of the over 50 companies Kevin has worked for, the largest savings have come to companies that allow a full assessment of how their costs are being impacted by product design, packaging design, test methods, material handling practices, damage rates, and, often most importantly, defining the amount of excessive packaging used.
Please Google search "Kevin Howard, Packaging Engineer" to see some of the many articles written about his successes in reducing costs, figuring out new ways to conduct drop tests and damage boundary tests, and how supply chains in India and China are so different from supply chains in other parts of the world.
Sometimes, it makes sense to increase packaging costs in order to reduce other costs, but often it's possible to significantly reduce logistics costs with small changes to packaging or product designs. On the other hand, perhaps a large change is in order, such as when Kevin invented Packaging Postponement for Inkjet Printers. That was a case of completely eliminating the box and all cushioning for the longest leg of the supply chain, from manufacturing sites to distribution centers, and then adding the package as orders came in. This required $750,000 to set up packaging lines, but it was paid back in the first two weeks of trial runs.
If your company is bold enough to consider new ways of packaging, all in an effort to improve profitability, then Packnomics can help!
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