Emballage et d'étiquetage de Solution à l'aide de données PLM/PIM Hub

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In the global supply chain environment, real-time product information, cost, and speed are key parameters in deciding the success and failure of strategies like time to market and time to volume.

Packaging and labeling is one important area that can have direct impact on design, storage, warehousing, transportation and handling costs as well as the tracking and tracing of the products across the supply chain eco system from supplier to customer.

This article outlines some of the Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) and Product Information Management (PIM) strategies that are important from the packaging and labeling perspective to reduce the risk associated with transportation costs, handling costs, resource consumption in tracking and tracing of physical movement of parts.

Key Challenges in Packaging and Labeling

Packaging and labeling requirements can vary widely depending on the industry, nature of products and market regulations. Below are some of the key challenges that companies face in various industries:

Design:Although packaging is important from the brand image perspective in most industries, it is rather paramount in Consumer Packaged Goods (CPG) and Pharmaceuticals. These industries are highly dependent on packaging and labeling for the success of their brands. The packaging and labeling design process starts with package and label design using part/ product specification and artwork. Maintaining low cost for packaging and labeling in the CPG and Pharmaceutical industries is the key challenge as it requires:

Design and prototyping activity co-ordination of global cross functional internal and external teamsExtensive artwork for product differentiationExtensive laboratory testing to provide nutritional values and product composition informationSafe and temper resistant packaging

The packaging challenges in the Medical Devices industry are significant right from design to delivery of the products from sterilization, compliance and material handling perspectives. A number of Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) use specialized contract manufacturers to adhere to regulatory standards.

High-tech industry packaging design requirements are stringent and are mostly driven by clean room, antistatic (ESD) material usage and compliance perspective (RoHS, EPA etc.).

In the retail industry, Stock Keeping Unit (SKU) dictates the packaging requirements. Since there can be multiple SKUs for a single product (using primary, secondary or tertiary packaging), an efficient part and its SKU bill of material creation process is critical from the productivity perspective.

Transportation:Product packaging and labeling become key parameters to identify the OEM piece part, manufacturer part and its country of origin. The product information becomes paramount for 3PL, 4PL logistic providers to plan their logistic networks, warehouse management and capacity planning.

Product labeling is needed in multiple languages along with the bar codes and RFID tags for tracking and tracing purposes as well as for export-import compliance etc.

Sustainability:The big trend towards sustainability is changing the way goods are packaged. There is an immense support for using environment friendly packaging that reduce waste while minimizing the packaging material and increasing the reusability. Sharing the sustainability related information across the extended value chain is almost mandatory.

Importance of system driven approach to packaging and labeling

The packaging and labeling activities involves a number of participants across the supply chain. This makes system-based solution requirements almost mandatory for any company trying to put together effective strategy in place.

Product packaging Information is shared by the company with its 3PL and 4PL service providers so that they can perform capacity planning and thereby reduce the storage and handling costs. The parts information like country of origin, manufacturer /manufacture part number is encoded in bar code label and RFID tags. This helps logistic providers plan their resource for quick identification and route it to the right destination most efficiently.

The labeling and packaging are also the primary source of information to track OEM, ODM and manufacturer parts. The packaging and bar code labels can be formatted to include the piece part information to facilitate the delivery and returns validation. Also, packaging and labeling is needed for segregation of parts at the End of Life (EOL) products for reuse and recovery purposes.

Why use PLM/PIM Data Hub Applications to address packaging and labeling challenges?

Using PLM or PIM strategies, product organizations are poised to benefit from maintaining product data accurately and being able to share it with supply chain partners on a real time basis.

The PLM/PIM Data Hub application provides capabilities for packaging and label design and collaboration with other supply chain partners. This can be used for tracking and tracing the products. The lifecycle phase, bill of materials and part revision ensures that the package and label design are as per the product requirement specifications.

PLM and PIM Data Hub both provide full functionality to handle the complete design, transportation and sustainability aspect. Both PLM and PIM provide out-of-the-box process for Cartonization/SKU bill or material creation in a few simple clicks thus keeping the part creation and maintenance process rather easy.

While the unlimited attribution in PLM and PIM Data Hub applications help the companies maintain all the possible product details in a central repository, advanced parametric search features enhances part search capability. This helps in greatly increasing reusability and sustainability.

Mass change ECOs can be used to mass update the packaging drawing and specification associated with multiple parts. Extended supply chain partners can be informed of the design changes during or after the change release process using change management features like the Engineering Change Orders (ECO) and Manufacturing Change Orders (MCO) workflow notifications.

The propagation of information to any other system(s) can be easily achieved using out-of-the-box integration features like business events and SOA Integration. The Global Data Synchronization Network (GDSN) and other integrations can be easily achieved with minimal effort using PLM/PIM applications due to their SOA readiness.

User roles and privileges provide secured access for relevant information. The product collaboration feature simplifies the user authorization.


With such powerful features, PLM/PIM become de-facto applications in addressing the packaging and labeling challenges that companies face.

© Rapidflow Apps Inc., All Rights Reserved.

This article is written by a Prinicipal Consultant at Rapidflow Apps Inc. He has over 10 years in Operations Management and PLM/PIM Consulting. He has contributed to the success of many high profile implementations. For more information or feedback on this article, please feel free to write to info@rapidflowapps.com

More details process diagram related to this article can be viewed at http://www.rapidflowapps.com/whitepapers/index.php

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