Choosing A Contract Packager
When choosing a contract packaging service, you should use a wide range of selection criteria. And, depending on the personality of you and your company and the nature of the project on which the contract packager will by working, place more or less emphasis on each of those criteria.
Here are several considerations:
Location—Convenient location relative to your manufacturing and distribution facilities can save delivery time and lower freight charges, possibly impacting the total cost of your project. But keep in mind that the savings achieved by using the most qualified packager can easily outweigh most freight considerations.
Experience—You’re paying for expert packaging skills, so make sure the packagers you consider are equipped to deliver the service your needs demand. Look for companies that have serviced other clients with similar product lines and packaging needs.
Strong Ethics—There simply is no substitute. If you don’t have complete confidence in the honesty and integrity of the contract packager you work with, then the service and information that contract packager offers is of little or no value. Ask yourself some questions: Does this packager have high standards? Is their facility clean and orderly? What sort of production and quality controls are in place? Can they show you training records? Are they willing to let your staff periodically monitor progress on-site?
Cost—You get what you pay for. Both low and high packaging quotes should be thoroughly studied, analyzed, and considered in relation to service that you expect to receive.
Good Communication—The packager must know what your situation is before offering options. Beware of candidates who don’t listen to what you have to say. Brilliant thoughts and innovative solutions will do you no good if the contract packager doesn’t have the communication skills he or she needs to pass those ideas on to you.
Controls—Be sure you see eye-to-eye on detailed paperwork or control requirements and that the company is set up to put the proper procedures in place. Make sure the packager you hire has the analytical skills needed to help you develop a full and accurate picture of problems, solutions, and the various repercussions of those solutions.
Financial Strength—Does the contract packager have the financial strength you need?
Personality—A good match of personalities between the client and the contract packager’s key staff helps ensure a successful relationship. If a contract packager’s company representative has a demeanor that doesn’t suggest that he or she has what it takes to get the job done, he or she probably won’t.
High Standards—A good packager should be constantly striving to serve you better. Even if a contract packager fits all of your requirements, don’t use any vendor if you don’t feel comfortable or confident that they can get your job done successfully.
Size—Is the packager large enough or small enough to handle your project? Does the packager have enough experienced personnel? A staff capable of solving problems and implementing solutions is very important. Successful contract packaging relies on good management and manufacturing practices.
Quality—Look for signs of innovation, unique approaches, and a different perspective. Ask about whether the packager has a quality program in place and discuss their production controls.
Full-time Attention—Make sure your work isn’t an afterthought. To ensure your project gets the attention it deserves, hire a professional contract packager.
Strong references—Ask for a list of other clients.
Conflict of Interests—Does the contract packager offer a proprietary line which might compete with your product line?
And if you are now ready to choose a contract packager, please give us a call!