How to Approach “Right First Time” Artwork and Create Time and Cost Efficiency
Packaging and artwork management has become a particularly complicated process in many large businesses.
Consumers and legislators have become more demanding for products and packaging that meet their expectations for quality, cost and social responsibility. In addition to this, revenue and margin can quickly dissipate as new buying patterns emerge and mature more quickly than ever before. As a result, retailers and brand owners require improved methods to run their packaging and artwork development processes if they are to reach their objectives.
Packaging artwork generally requires approval by numerous departments and many people, which can mean reviewing it over again, costing time, money and resource. In a bid to speed up the process and launch products faster, retailers and brand owners aspire to achieve ‘right first time’ artwork production, but more often than not it can take 2, 3 or even more attempts to finally approve artwork.
So, how do you increase efficiency and speed to market by getting your artwork built and approved at the first version?
The foundations to right first time artwork
Before we can even think about spending time and money on creating that first artwork file, we first need to consider the working elements that are needed to do so. These are as follows;
- Pack copy content
- Cutter guide / die line
- Design file / implementation guidelines
The stakeholders that are responsible for providing each of the above elements are required to do so within an agreed timeframe or critical path, having worked to ensure that all data is correct, legal and fit for purpose. However, it’s not at all uncommon for any or all of these elements to be supplied incomplete, incorrectly or in some cases not at all. This lack of understanding, focus and attention can only result in re-works being required as opposed to the opportunity to create ‘right first time’ artwork. Installing a “right first time” mentality at these initial stages of the process is key to underpinning a process that will in turn generate multiple efficiency opportunities further down the line. and the longer term potential to automate aspects of the artwork creation.
Increasing efficiency through improved process management
There are specific factors to consider when looking to increase efficiency through better process definition and management, each of which can have a subsequent affect on your chances of achieving “right first time” artwork. These include;
- Identification of key process milestones and stakeholder responsibilities
- Internal and external resource application and alignment
- Software solutions to automate workflow tasks and centrally manage all assets
Establishing an effective process and ensuring that this is followed is key in getting your artwork ‘right first-time’, but is your business disciplined enough to understand the need for this and apply the time and resource to execute the change management required to facilitate it?
Change management; time to opt for external help?
For senior management whom already acknowledge a lack of efficiency in process or the management of this process, it’s likely you’ll have an appetite to take on change management, often via an external source. After all, a carefully chosen provider with the right credentials and experience can not only help to review and improve current ways of working but also ensure these processes are adhered to and ensure deadlines are met and products reach shelves on time.
Let’s get your artwork right first time…
JPG has the expertise in the market place to get artwork right first time. We work to help clients consistently achieve increased percentage of ‘right first time’ artwork.
We listen and prescribe, we educate, we support and we learn together. From a continuous improvement perspective, tracking main reasons for rejection to then get a focus point for areas that require training can work as an incredibly successful consultative approach. Doing so can better enable stakeholders to consistently achieve increased percentage of right first time and increase V1 percentage by 70+%. We look for better ways or working together and delivering successful product launches on time and on budget.
We are business process managers, consulting with our clients and using our experience and drive to facilitate changes that will ultimately benefit clients through leaner, more efficient ways of working. For more information on how we can help you, please get in touch.