Packnomics: A Holistic Approach to Reducing Costs

Strategic Packaging: Way more than just a box!

Packaging suppliers often design and supply packages, but have they offered any insight on how to better design the product or components, both for fragility and geometry, all with the goal of reducing logistics costs?  

Has your supplier ever suggested how to make lab tests more reflective of actual distribution hazards, or how to measure the amount of excessive packaging currently used?  

Have they conducted supply chain assessments to assure current packaging works?  Or, perhaps even more insightful, if there might be excessive packaging that lends no value to your organization?  

Expert distribution packaging engineering considers product design, packaging, testing, procurement, damages and material handling methods.   

What we offer:

Assessment: Assess current package design, product design, observe manufacturing and distribution system to understand current problems and opportunities.  Assess current testing methods to assure they accurately reflect hazards found in distribution, and whether or not there are better/cheaper/faster test methods to employ. 

Recommendations: Recommend better options in component design, product design, package design (materials, geometry, size, better specifications that result in lower costs and higher quality), testing methods, damage reduction, decreasing logistics/transportation costs, and methods to reduce packaging costs through zero-based pricing techniques.

Actions: Once the assessment and recommendations are completed and agreed upon, Packnomics can follow through with managing testing, writing new test methods, developing packaging prototypes with suppliers, help establish new processes for material handling, specifying packaging with performance characteristics, and assist product designers in adding cost-effective logistics functionality to their components and products. 

Expert Witness:  Kevin has provided expert witness insights in a variety of packaging related cases.  Kevin's background in design, testing, material handling and supply chain hazards have all helped Kevin's clients successfully negotiate favorable outcomes.  In virtually all cases, the packaging had not been properly tested for the conditions to which it was being subjected.  Injuries have included broken necks/spines (due to inappropriate banding material and pallet design), torn arm ligaments (inappropriate hand hole design and box materials), broken bones (due to pallets falling over and not being stretch wrapped to the manufacturer's specifications).  Kevin has also worked on cases dealing with shipping damages and who is actually responsible at different points within the supply chain. 

   *  A history of success: Kevin Howard's innovative solutions over the past years have been documented in numerous magazines and books.  His annual savings of millions of dollars (and often tens of millions) is an indicator of a combination of knowledge and creative problem solving.  Few packaging engineers have saved their companies more money than Kevin.

   *  High volume background: Kevin's experience of working for the largest home appliance manufacturer and two of the largest electronics companies has given him invaluable insight to how best reduce costs from a packaging viewpoint.  Using these settings to try new ideas resulted in dramatic cost reductions on a very large scale.  The largest savings always related to increasing product density into a set amount of space.  Many companies have great management and financial skills but fail to focus on this basic rule. 

   *  Cross functional, systems approach to reducing costs: Kevin has a long history of influencing product designers to modify component and full product design in ways that reduced damages, packaging costs, transportation costs, and product assembly costs.   Many companies could take direct advantage of this approach to gain greater economic efficiencies. 

   *  Small volume, high-value success: Though Kevin's full time employment had been with large companies that manufacture millions of products annually (and for HP DeskJet printers, monthly), Kevin has also applied his same principles of efficient packaging to small volume products with high value.  The economics change for such products, where damage rates must approach zero, but the principles of good packaging and product design, testing, and understanding the distribution environment, all remain constant.

   *  Testing: Few people in the world have an academic background in product and package testing.  Not only is Kevin well educated in this field, but he has taught this topic at two universities.  Kevin's pioneering work at HP to adjust laboratory tests to better replicate field damage issues resulted in smaller packages and more robust products, thus saving millions of dollars in packaging and logistics costs.

   *  Distribution system assessment: It has been Kevin's experience that even the largest, most sophisticated companies simply don't know how well their packaging is doing in distribution.  Traveling extensively across the United States, Europe, Asia and India, Kevin consistently witnessed significant packaging and product failures that were never identified by the field as major issues.  Even standing shoulder to shoulder with other degreed packaging engineers, Kevin commonly identified issues not seen by his colleagues.  Understanding what you're seeing, why it's happening, how to replicate the failures in the lab, and then how to resolve the issue cost effectively, all play to Kevin's strengths.

Contact Us

Drop us a line!

Packnomics LLC.

333 Southeast 48th Avenue, Portland, Oregon 97215, United States

Kevin Howard Cell: (360) 606-0235 Desk: (360) 828-8822