Date: September 9, 2021 | Category: Quality | Author: Kayla Caticchio


For many businesses in the print and packaging industry, outsourcing prepress is becoming more and more common for a variety of reasons. Outsourcing lowers costs and helps businesses focus more resources on other projects, helping to increase their scalability. Despite the benefits, however, there are several cons that come with moving your prepress activities outside your organization.

Outsourcing can create a gap between workflow checkpoints, creating uncertainties in the way businesses operate. From the time files are sent to prepress to the time they are received back from the supplier, many opportunities for error can be created. Though there are significant time and cost savings associated with outsourcing prepress, it forces businesses to relinquish a certain aspect of control that oftentimes leads to quality issues and inconsistent delivery times.


Quality Issues with Outsourcing Prepressillustration of print inspection system

Implementing a proper quality control process is essential for businesses across all industries. By outsourcing prepress activities, companies must accept the fact that they might lose a certain amount of visibility when it comes to quality. Delivery times are another issue that can arise by outsourcing prepress. Chances are your business is not the only company that a prepress vendor is dealing with, therefore delays in sending back files are common. In addition, varying contracts from different clients can create a proclivity for the vendor to prioritize certain projects over others, letting errors and time constraints fall through the cracks.

Solving for Quality Issues Using Automated Quality ControlIllustration of a computer screen with additional widgets

One of the most effective ways to mitigate quality issues caused by outsourcing prepress is to introduce an automated proofreading process to inspect prepress files. Whether prepress files were prepared in-house or by a vendor, any errors or inconsistencies can be automatically detected without having to rely on the human eye. These errors can range from the occasional small spelling mistake to a catastrophic defect like a wrong logo or missing artwork component.

Automated quality control tools also provide significant time savings when it comes to inspecting prepress files. What would previously take hours to inspect can be cut down to seconds using automation, especially when files are large or complex. By ensuring that prepress files are entirely accurate, businesses can set the precedence for a successful print run without having to spend hours manually proofreading.

GlobalVision for Prepress TeamsDiagram of different screens and check boxes

Automated quality control tools, like GlobalVision, benefits businesses by providing reliable and repeatable inspection results across all departments. Without proper control over quality processes at the prepress stage, businesses run the risk of having production delays or errors in their printing. In turn, this puts customers at risk of receiving late or faulty packaging components. For both in-house and external prepress teams, automated inspection technology is a proactive approach to quality control that decreases the risk of errors at any stage of the workflow. To learn more, visit globalvision.co/prepress.

Date: August 31, 2021 | Category: Quality | Author: Kayla Caticchio


Technical writing refers to any type of communication written for businesses or industries that focuses on services and products. It plays an important role in the manufacturing of pharmaceutical drugs. In the pharmaceutical and life sciences industry, any type of packaging error can lead to negative consequences for a company. Complete recalls could be needed, affecting the brand’s reputation and potentially resulting in lawsuits or damage to a patient’s health.

Aside from text, symbols play an important role in harmonizing pharmaceutical labels across global markets. They help save valuable space while sharing important information and guidelines in addition to saving on translation costs. In order to minimize misinterpretation across markets, symbols have standards in different regions of the world. From manufacturer symbols to safety and storage symbols, companies must ensure that these icons are entirely accurate in order to meet regulatory requirements.


Protecting critical content with automation

The pharmaceutical industry requires all labels and packaging components to make it to market error-free. For big pharmaceutical companies that sell their products in various regions, adapting technical writing and regulatory symbols to meet foreign requirements can create room for errors to be introduced. Fortunately, modern technology has made it possible for businesses to ensure 100% accuracy before releasing products. Such tools, like GlobalVision’s automated quality control platform, help safeguard labels and packaging from critical errors.

The automatic inspection of text and artwork components on this type of packaging has several advantages when it comes to protecting technical writing and symbols. Firstly, they have the ability to detect any type of text deviation on common words, medical words, and foreign languages. Detecting such errors by only relying on the human eye can be long, cumbersome, and ineffective, especially when factoring in elements like proofreader’s fatigue. Automated quality inspection software eliminates these inefficiencies while also improving the accuracy of critical content. GlobalVision’s Text Inspection, for example, includes a built-in medical dictionary that includes thousands of commonly used terms in the pharmaceutical and life sciences industry.

Along with ensuring that their technical writing remains accurate, pharmaceutical companies can verify that ingredient lists, components, dosages, and other important information are accurately transcribed, translated, and spelled correctly. With GlobalVision’s Text Inspection, companies can also add their own pharmaceutical dictionary that is completely customized to their brand. This allows them to build libraries that include terms unique to their organizations, helping to prevent the misspelling of medical and brand terms like product names.

Automated artwork inspection for pharmaceutical symbols

When it comes to pharmaceutical symbols, companies must take great care to ensure that they are correctly formatted onto labels. These symbols exist to protect the consumer while also adhering to regulatory requirements. And as anyone in the industry knows, rules and regulations covering packaging quality control are very strict. In the past, companies would inspect some or all of their products manually. This proves to be ineffective, inefficient, and oftentimes risky.

With today’s technology, pharmaceutical companies can integrate an all-in-one quality inspection platform anywhere along the production process. GlobalVision’s Graphics Inspection allows brands to instantly inspect all parts of their artwork with ease. Parts of the artwork that can be inspected include logos, design, braille, color, barcodes, and more. This ensures that pharmaceutical symbols are accurately printed onto products before they make it to market.

Conclusion

Good quality content can achieve positive results for any pharmaceutical company. With the right technology, managing technical writing and pharmaceutical symbols can be done accurately and efficiently. GlobalVision helps companies in regulated industries automate their quality control so they can get products to market faster and with confidence. To learn more, click here.

Date: August 31, 2021 | Category: Quality | Author: Kayla Caticchio


Product development and manufacturing are at the forefront of any pharmaceutical company’s business activities. Research and development, as well as product innovation help, are key factors in differentiating one company from another in the pharmaceutical landscape. In such a competitive and regulatory environment, a successful product market integration is essential to the success of your company. Packaging and labeling processes are critical to ensure that products are brought to market as quickly, efficiently, and cost-effectively as possible. In this article, we’ll explore 5 ways pharmaceutical companies can optimize their packaging and labeling processes.


Packaging and Labeling

With the majority of resources allocated towards product development and manufacturing procedures, packaging and labeling processes can sometimes be an afterthought. Labels and packaging components are just as important as the products inside when it comes to the pharmaceutical and life sciences industry.

With extremely regulated health requirements, mislabeling your product can have serious financial, legal, and safety implications for the brand. In foreign markets, not complying with local labeling guidelines can cost a company hundreds of thousands of dollars in wasted inventory that can’t be sold. Packaging defects also include defective containers, mispackaging, and label mix-ups. Understanding the importance of a proper labeling process is essential to ensure organizational efficiency and the long-term success of the company.

Best Practices to Optimize Labeling Processes

Here are 5 ways your company can optimize the pharmaceutical labeling process:

1. Standardizing Labeling Procedures
Creating a standardized labeling process will allow your company to reduce much of the pressures it faces in terms of efficiency and operational costs. Meeting increasingly demanding regulatory requirements, gaining greater control of your supply chain, and increasing productivity are just a few of the benefits that integrating a standardized labeling process within your company can bring. The standardization process also eases the means of entry into new market opportunities by enabling a method of production that can be easily adapted to suit different packaging and labeling regulations from various regions.

2. Linking Data Directly to the Source
Tools such as a cloud system can help manage and update any regulatory data for products across various platforms and departments. This allows companies to systematically decrease the number of mistakes and inaccuracies that can occur on labels and packaging.

3. Using Automation Tools to Streamline Workflow
When it comes to quality control, the use of automated tools has several benefits to a company’s operations. Automation helps streamline workflows while enabling the traceability and accountability of changes that may have been made on labels and packaging files.

4. Centralize Data
Having all of your data gathered into a single, centralized system will increase the efficiency of information and data traveling within your company. Furthermore, it will mitigate the risks of communication mishaps. This is especially relevant when entering new markets where labels and packaging will need to be updated to comply with the targeted market requirements.

5. Prepare for the Unexpected
When discussing the importance of standardization, digital tools like automated quality control and cloud-based systems can help businesses prepare for any unexpected setbacks that may occur in their workflow. Having information that pertains to your labeling process readily available at all steps of the pharmaceutical workflow will reduce long project delays and the risk of letting a critical labeling error slip by.

The Pharmaceutical Labeling Process for Your Business

The pharmaceutical landscape is composed of ever-changing local and international regulations. As a result, companies require vigorous quality control standards across all processes. GlobalVision’s automated quality control tools ensure that files remain error-free from creation all the way through to production, allowing businesses to sign-off with confidence that their labels and packaging are accurate.

To learn more, click here.

 
 

Date: August 25, 2021 | Category: Quality | Author: Kayla Caticchio


Our world is growing at a rapid pace and so is the consumer market. The space between the market and the consumer’s home has drastically shrunk in recent times, with online marketplaces quickly replacing traditional shopping experiences. Consumers now have access to products from all over the world – and they can get them delivered directly to their homes with minimal effort.

With so much competition between brands, packaging design is a key way to distinguish your company from others and thus persuade consumers to purchase your products. That is why brands must take great care to avoid little errors that can ruin a great packaging design.


What kind of errors can ruin a great packaging design?

The opportunity for errors to be created increases as text and artwork files are converted into prepress files. They can become distorted and prone to critical errors. Consequently, print errors can also occur during production.

Examples of these errors include text errors like missing or dropped text, inserted or deleted words, and font errors. Graphic errors like misregistration or artwork deviations can also occur. Spelling errors are also common, especially when adapting packaging components into foreign languages for use in overseas markets.

The problem with manual sample inspections

Brands don’t have to cut corners to save time when it comes to proofing print samples. Companies that outsource printing understand the importance of checking packaging components once they’re completed and sent back from the print supplier. It’s unrealistic to expect companies to visually inspect every single printed component, especially given the cost of resources and labor involved. That’s where sampling comes in. With sampling, the quality control department will determine the number of copies they must check to reasonably conclude that the entire shipment can be approved. For example, only 40 copies will be proofread out of thousands.

The problem with manually inspecting small sample sizes is that defects could be localized elsewhere and might be missed by the proofreader. Clients should always be aware that the printers they deal with likely have other customers and complete many jobs daily. Gang runs, during which different products are printed on one sheet to reduce waste and save money are a regular occurrence. As a result, mix-ups can commonly occur.

Automated quality control for print samples

Automated quality control like GlobalVision helps both printers and incoming quality assurance departments ensure that printed samples are free from critical errors. For brand companies, automated quality control tools allow them to compare physical copies to the approved artwork that was originally sent to the printer. Quality control departments simply have to scan the selected physical samples to then compare them back to the original artwork file.

The problem with manually inspecting small sample sizes is that defects could be localized elsewhere and might be missed by the proofreader. Clients should always be aware that the printers they deal with likely have other customers and complete many jobs daily. Gang runs, during which different products are printed on one sheet to reduce waste and save money are a regular occurrence. As a result, mix-ups can commonly occur.

What are the benefits of inspecting samples with automated quality control?

  • Brands can keep track of version changes while ensuring that the right content was printed.
  • Multiple production samples from various print suppliers can easily be managed.
  • Brands can protect themselves from both financial and raw materials loss by ensuring work has been printed properly.
  • Errors in text, artwork, spelling, barcode, and more can be detected in seconds versus hours.

Automating the process of checking printed samples has many benefits for companies that need to get their products to market quickly. Aside from the time and cost savings, ensuring that products make it to the consumers in packaging that is entirely error-free is crucial. By replacing the manual inspection of samples, businesses have more resources available to focus on R&D and other projects.

To learn more about GlobalVision’s automated quality control tools, click here.

Why Automated Quality Control is the Key to Getting Products to Market Faster banner
 
 
 

Date: August 11, 2021 | Category: Quality | Author: Kayla Caticchio


The modern business era has been characterized by a constant need to produce and deliver products with speed and efficiency. Long delays can result in financial losses and wasted resources that could have otherwise been used to acquire new business. Globalization and digitalization have redefined the standards of business practices by enabling companies to sell their products in various foreign markets. In turn, competition between brands has increased exponentially and companies are being held to the highest standards of customer satisfaction.

To manage localization requirements, businesses must be able to standardize quality control parameters across the entire enterprise. Any quality errors that make their way onto labels or packaging can undermine the bottom line by causing consumers to jump between brands due to mistrust or safety concerns. 

With all these obstacles consistently present within business operations, companies must find a way to tackle potential quality issues while simultaneously working to expand their business. They must be able to complete projects and deliver products to market quickly to avoid losing customers to competing brands. Automated quality control is a digital technology that helps improve quality inspections by reducing mistakes in the workflow. By eliminating manual proofreading, businesses can improve performance and thus get products to market faster without compromising quality.

Manual vs Automated Proofreading

illustration of a magnifying glass with packaging inspectionBusinesses today are relying on digital technology more than ever before. When it comes to quality control, automation technology is drastically changing the nature of running inspections on labels, packaging, and digital files. Quality control is vital for the success and long-term sustainability of any consumer-facing business, and fortunately the digital era has created ways to improve quality control processes for companies across multiple industries.

Replacing manual proofreading can eliminate inefficiencies and speed up time to market by automating the inspection of text, documents, graphics, and more. GlobalVision’s comprehensive inspection software helps businesses ensure a high standard of quality control while eliminating time-consuming and error-prone manual checks.

How Does Automated Quality Control Help Bring Your Products to Market Faster?

Illustration of inspected products and logosAutomated quality control technology, like GlobalVision, helps businesses get products to market faster without compromising quality. By automating manual tasks that would otherwise take hours to complete, GlobalVision speeds up the entire quality control process and significantly cuts down proofreading time. In turn, errors can be detected quickly and accurately as inefficiencies like fatigue and human error are eliminated.

Here are the additional benefits of implementing automation technology in your business’ quality control process: 

Illustration of a fast inspecitonTime benefits of automated quality control.

  • Eliminates hours spent searching content for errors
  • Inspects files in seconds compared to hours spent manually proofreading
  • Automatically detect all types of errors at any stage of the process
  • Achieve faster turnaround times by accelerating approvals and reducing quality delays

Efficiency benefits of automated quality control.

  • Easily compare two files to detect any differences between the two
  • Identify any touchpoints within your business that are prone to errors
  • Utilize time usually spent on proofreading to bring jobs to market faster


Visit GlobalVision’s web page to learn more about getting your products to market faster with automated quality control.  


Team enjoying the benefits of implementing a quality inspection system

Date: Feb 04, 2021 | CategoryQuality AuthorKayla Caticchio


Quality Inspection System Advantages 

How shifting from manual to automated quality control can help your business eliminate inefficiencies.

By Kayla Caticchio 

 

If you’ve clicked on this article, chances are you’re considering implementing a quality inspection system in your organization. Maybe your business is losing money due to delays in the quality control department, maybe you’ve had a critical error slip by unnoticed, or maybe you just want to give your team the tools they need to get the job done more efficiently. Whatever your reason for considering a quality inspection system may be, there are several benefits that come with implementing automation across your quality workflow.

The importance of error-free packaging

With globalization increasing the complexity of developing, distributing, and selling products, many businesses are turning towards automation to help manage their operations. While automation has traditionally been implemented in areas such as production, marketing, and even sales, there’s one aspect of business operations that more and more companies are choosing to automate: quality control. As businesses, particularly brand companies, tend to focus their technology on product features or consumer benefits, the productivity gains associated with automated quality control can oftentimes be overlooked. But they shouldn’t be. Any company whose products land in the hands of consumers should consider the importance of high-quality packaging. 

With thousands of products and hundreds of SKUs, companies in industries such as pharmaceuticals, printing, and consumer goods have their own unique set of challenges when it comes to ensuring packaging quality. As anyone in these industries already knows, ensuring packaging accuracy is no small task, especially in an age where one small error can have serious consequences for your brand. A misprinted label, for example, can cost a company thousands of dollars in material goods and even more in brand equity as consumers begin to lose trust in the brand. Think this could never happen to your brand? Think again. These types of errors are even more common than one might think. Year after year, the majority of FDA product recalls are caused by labeling errors. The risk of packaging errors factored in with increasingly complex regulations have contributed to automated quality inspections becoming the gold-standard across a variety of industries. Fortunately quality inspection systems are becoming more robust, accessible, and easier to use than ever before. In this article, we’ll be discussing how implementing these systems can benefit quality control teams, no matter the industry.

What is a quality inspection system?

What is a quality inspection systemQuality inspection systems enable proofreaders to compare Master and Sample files, both digital and printed, to automatically detect any differences between the two. These side-by-side comparisons work by overlaying two files to pick up even the smallest of errors with pinpoint precision. Built for use along the entire quality control process, quality inspection systems can be implemented across multiple departments to compare content at every stage of the workflow. This allows proofreaders and other quality control professionals to ensure that no errors have been created as files move from one stage to the next. Printer proofs, for example, can be compared to original PDF files to avoid conversion errors. Next, plate files can be inspected to ensure that no changes were introduced during the stepping and separation process. Finally, proofreaders can confirm that prepress files are error-free and ready to be printed before being sent to the customer. These systems also enable the inspection of digital files against printed components to ensure that final packaging matches the original approved artwork. 

The common challenges of manual proofreading

With consumers having more brand options than ever before, getting products to market faster is essential for many businesses when it comes to differentiating themselves from competitors. Leading the time-to-market race gives you the benefit of reaching consumers first and positioning your brand as a market leader before anyone else. Unfortunately, many companies still rely on manual proofreading methods that can slow down the entire quality control process, affecting distribution and project turnaround time. These manual methods are slow, inefficient, and prone to errors that can range from a spelling mistake or missing piece of artwork, to a more dangerous error like the wrong dosage information on a pharmaceutical label. 

Another challenge is the fact that standard packaging processes usually consist of manually proofing labels and packaging, which can often take hours. Repetitive tasks combined with high volumes of packaging materials can lead to proofing fatigue and therefore allow errors to slip by unnoticed. It’s not uncommon for errors to be missed when proofreaders have been reviewing the same work for hours on end. Small font sizes, distractions, and difficulty managing version changes also contribute to errors that can ultimately have detrimental effects on your company. 


Here are the benefits of quality inspection systems for your business: 

 

Faster project turnaround time

One of the biggest reasons why companies turn to quality inspection systems is to help cut down on revision time, in turn speeding up the entire quality control process and getting products out the door faster. By centralizing inspections and allowing users to detect errors early on (ie. before they’re printed), quality inspection systems fast-track the quality control process without sacrificing quality. Automatically comparing samples to customer-approved files ensure that differences like text, spelling, artwork, and barcode errors can be caught immediately. This helps prevent further inspections downstream that can be inefficient and lead to lost time. In fact, many quality departments that have implemented this kind of technology have been able to cut their proofreading time in half, oftentimes going from hours of inspection to seconds.

Without spending wasted hours proofreading, typical jobs are brought to market 3-5 days earlier, generating increased revenue and allowing us to focus on relationships with our customers.” – Vince Nocella, CRW Graphics 

Managing revision cycles is another benefit of making the switch to quality inspection systems as any errors that have occurred between stages can immediately be identified. From the copy and artwork creation stage to prepress, print, and delivery to the customer, inspection technology helps ensure that there are no delays between departments. This creates a more collaborative proofreading process, improving communication with comprehensive inspection reports that give proofreaders the ability to share information between revision cycles. Users can leave comments and annotations on inspection reports to compare with previous versions, ensuring that the right changes have been made.  

Exponential business growth

Business growth is another major benefit of implementing a quality inspection system. For certain industries such as Marketing & Creative Agencies, a common challenge is completing jobs within the amount of time allocated by the client. Eliminating delays in their proofreading process means companies no longer have to struggle with juggling man-hours and budget. This gives them the ability  to take on more projects, helping grow their business exponentially. 

Quality inspection systems can also help set your business apart from the competition by using it to position yourself as a industry leader in quality control and automation. Printers for example, can use quality inspection technology to open doors for new business opportunities by showing potential customers that they’re willing to invest in systems that provide an extra layer of security. Producing the highest quality labels and packaging reduces the risk of expensive reprints, or even recalls, saving customers time, money, and potential damage to their reputation. Verified inspection technology gives your customers the added assurance that extensive quality control checks are being carried out in your production facility, ensuring that their most important work is protected. “[Quality inspection technology] shows customers and potential customers that we’re doing everything available to ensure that jobs are done properly straight out of the gate” says Josh Jenks, Technical Sales Director at Target Label. 

Cost savings

Aside from causing serious damage to your brand’s image, letting a critical error slip by can cause significant financial implications. When an error is detected on labels or packaging, companies might have to issue a recall on the product, costing them thousands of dollars and leaving them with entire batches of unsellable inventory. “[Quality inspection systems] have saved us from a huge recall which could have bankrupt our company” says one quality control inspector in the pharmaceutical industry.  “It’s improved the overall quality on the production floor and reduced complaints and returns from our customers”. By detecting even the smallest errors before they’re printed, your quality department can be confident that everything leaving the facility is 100% accurate. 

Oftentimes, it’s not a major packaging error that ends up costing money for a brand. Even something as simple as a faulty barcode can be problematic. Poor barcode printing or distortion of the barcode can affect its readability, and as every brand company knows, unreadable barcodes at the point of sale result in a loss of revenue. Quality inspection software can verify and grade all barcodes before they’re printed, protecting your packaging from faulty barcodes without having to manually scan each one. This can help your business maximize sales revenue by ensuring that every product that hits store shelves can be properly scanned at the register. 

Material management can also be a source of financial concern for any company that deals with packaging. Excess print waste for example, can cost companies time and money as any errors made during the printing process will have to be corrected with additional resources. When you consider the costs of printing, like ink, warehousing costs, postage, and labour, any reprints caused by errors can have serious financial implications. Quality inspection systems eliminate the risk of misprints and formatting issues that result in lost time and wasted materials. Effectively managing waste prevention with automated quality control allows you to conduct business more sustainably, helping to improve both your environmental and financial impact. 

Shorten approval cycles

In addition to shortening time-to-market, quality inspection technology accelerates the approval process by eliminating the need to travel between production facilities for approval. These systems store all relevant inspection information to be tracked within the platform, centralizing feedback and ensuring accountability for each inspection. Without having to manually markup each proof or document, proofreaders can assign levels and comments on revisions. This allows your quality team to be completely transparent with customers in regards to the types of differences found between the Master and Sample files. By digitally keeping track of all inspection results through comprehensive inspection reports, all changes can be effectively communicated to key stakeholders for a quicker approval cycle. With these inspection reports, customers or other stakeholders have the assurance that appropriate quality control measures have been implemented and that the required changes have been made. 

Getting started with quality inspection systems

As competition between brands becomes more prominent, companies face constant pressure to protect their image and reputation while being seen as innovators or market leaders. In turn, product lines are expanding and brands are starting to introduce their products into new markets, therefore increasing production volume. This can make the quality control process more difficult to manage as it becomes increasingly complex. With workloads increasing for proofreaders and other members of quality control departments, so does the risk of errors that can make their way into the hands of consumers. Fortunately, quality inspection systems are becoming more accessible and widely implemented across a variety of industries. While the initial cost of implementing a quality inspection system can seem high compared to sticking with the status quo of manual proofreading, the time and cost savings on labor and artwork make it worthwhile. For example, over 75% of proofreaders who use GlobalVision’s quality inspection software have been able to regain their initial investment within two years. As label and packaging standards continue to evolve, so does the need to implement effective technology solutions like automated quality inspections. These systems not only benefit quality control teams for the reasons mentioned throughout this article, they also help improve processes and productivity throughout your entire organization, making the switch from manual to automated quality control a worthwhile one. 


To learn more about the benefits of implementing a quality inspection system, request a demo of GlobalVision here

 

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What our customers think of our proofreading tools:

“GlobalVision has resulted in at least 50% time-saved proofreading on the press versus visually inspecting the sheets. The more sheets there are, the more time savings we can observe”

Dave Mickiewicz, Sales Manager at General Converting Inc. 

Recycle to avoid waste on the print production floor
 

Date: November 2, 2020 | Category: Quality | Author: Seth Richtsmeier


From a business perspective, it makes sense to avoid waste whenever possible. Print waste in particular costs companies time and money, since any mistakes made during a print run will have to be corrected with additional resources. It’s more than just material waste — there’s also employee labor that must be factored in.

The True Costs of Excess Waste in Print Production

According to studies from Gartner, 50 percent of business waste is composed of paper products, with the average office worker going through 10,000 sheets of paper per year. These numbers alone are staggering and don’t even account for other print products such as boxes and packaging.

There are also other costs associated with printing, including ink, warehousing space, and postage. These additional fees can add up to 30 times the purchasing price of the paper itself – a significant expenditure.

Beyond the financial implications, there’s also the environmental impact of waste. With 40 percent of the world’s timber being cut down for paper production, brands and consumers alike should look for ways to limit excess scrap.

4 Steps to Minimize Print Production Waste

To reduce the amount of print and packaging waste created, there are several steps companies can take. Here are a few key recommendations.

  1. 1. Start with Employee Training

    Digital meetings can help to reduce paper wasteA common factor when it comes to waste is human error. From typos to incorrect colors and fonts, to formatting issues, there are many ways things can go wrong. “Mistakes caused by human error can definitely turn into possible reprints and extra platemaking” says John Reinhardt, Marketing Director of Prairie State Group, a leading packaging company in Franklin Park, IL.

    As soon as a new employee joins the team, they should receive adequate training to ensure they know what’s acceptable, how to spot errors, and how to correct those errors. Training should continue on a regular basis to ensure that everyone is aware of best practices.

  2. 2. Review Pre-Press Files with Care

    Avoid waste on the print production floor team collaborationBefore sending projects off to print, run through the files a few times to catch any errors. It’s often best to have more than a single person check for mistakes, as it’s easy for a writer or designer to skip over their own errors.

    Catching typos and formatting issues early on saves time, money, and resources. Always have at least two sets of eyes review each file before sending off any major print job. It may help to have a checklist available with things to look out for, including updated logos, correct color swatches, common spelling mistakes, and anything else that may be looked over otherwise.

  3. 3. Automated Quality Control

    Avoid waste on the print production floorThere’s a reason it’s called human-error – we’re all human and we all make mistakes. While it’s helpful to have multiple people review a print file, there’s always the chance of a problem slipping through the cracks. With automated quality control, the proofing process is easier, more efficient, and more accurate.

    Using digital inspections to compare proof documents against original files, conversion errors, and printing defects can be quickly detected and addressed. Users can review inspection reports and approve files for a full print run once ready. This early detection can prevent large-scale misprints, which saves the company from having to toss out entire batches. Again, this saves print materials, ink, coatings, and other costs associated with print waste. It also reduces the company’s environmental footprint (more on that below).

  4. 4. Inventory Management

    Avoid waste on the print production floor through inventory managementWhile printing materials with errors is wasteful, storage issues that can damage products can be just as detrimental. All paper-based products should be stored in cool, dry environments to prevent mildew. It’s also suggested that these products be protected from threats such as fire, water, and contaminants.

    These recommendations should be applied to raw materials as well as finished print products, which can be even more costly to replace due to ink and other coating costs.

Avoiding waste through recyclingMinimizing Environmental Impact

In addition to taking control of the waste stream by minimizing mistakes, companies should also consider the environmental implications of their practices. When choosing packaging materials, prioritize recyclable paper products. This may involve choosing different coatings and ink to ensure the package can be recycled with other paper and cardboard materials.

There are also several packaging materials that don’t involve paper at all. Corn- and mushroom-based packaging are gaining traction as eco-friendly options. A seaweed-based material called agar is in the early stages of development as a viable packaging alternative as well. Keep an open mind about new products and consider how they can fit into your packaging stream.

GlobalVision's digital proofreading of nested sheetsAvoid Waste Today with Quality Control

Ultimately, the best way to reduce waste is to invest in your quality control. Eliminating the risk of misprints and formatting issues will save countless reams of paper and other materials. Automated quality control systems are a necessity for waste prevention. As Sales Manager Dave Mickiewicz from General Converting Inc. says “With [automated quality control], sheets can be quickly inspected to check for smashes, hickeys, content errors. It has definitely helped eliminate lost time and wasted materials”. 

To learn how your company can benefit from significant returns by automating your quality control process, check out GlobalVision’s guide Shifting Gears from Manual to Automated Quality Control.

Key elements to inspect when creating brand packaging
 

Date: October 5, 2020 | Category: Quality | Author: Seth Richtsmeier


When you think about your products, what sets them apart from others in the industry? Are they more durable than the competition? Do they have better features or a more user-friendly design? Why should customers choose you over another company?

By answering these questions, business leaders can begin to establish a brand identity. Just as people have different personalities, so do brands. Ideally, your brand’s identity should click with that of your customers. It should also be readily apparent in all interactions your audience has with the company – each customer touchpoint must conform to brand identity, from customer support to product delivery.

Understanding the Impact of Brand Identity

Proper error-free packaging increases consumer appreciation Many businesses understand the basics of branding and packaging, which includes choosing the right colors and logos to visually represent the company. While this is a good start, it only scratches the surface of all that’s included when building brand identity.

Brand identity encompasses everything that sets one company apart from another. It’s more than products and services; it’s how a company delivers on those services. How a company meets expectations, connects with customers, defines its values – all these factors define a brand’s identity. A company with a strong identity that is known for providing exceptional service and support and remaining true to its values will make customers feel more confident doing business with them.

The Importance of Brand Packaging in Building Brand Identity

Approved error-free brand packaging Have you ever received a package in the mail, only to open it up and discover that the item you purchased was broken? The most important role of packaging is to protect an item during transit, whether it’s being shipped across the world or simply needs to survive a car ride home. Look for options that fit the needs of the product while also fitting in with overall brand values. For example, if your company is committed to sustainability, select materials that are easily recyclable and renewable.

Remember that brand packaging is an extension of your product identity. A negative unboxing experience will reflect poorly on the entire brand. Alternatively, a surprisingly positive experience will stay in people’s minds when it’s time to consider their next purchase.

Top Considerations for Print PackagingElements used to ensure packaging integrity

There are many considerations to keep in mind when developing print packaging and branding. Ultimately, the customer and their experience should be top of mind when selecting packaging options.

Protection

Since the most important job of packaging is to protect the product, consider the weight of the items being shipped, the durability of materials used, and which types of filler will best protect products without leaving a mess for customers to clean up after opening.

Accessibility

To build a truly inclusive brand identity, think about challenges faced by consumers and how your packaging can solve them. Including braille text on the packaging, for instance, can allow those with visual impairments to read important information on the package. Similarly, large, easy-to-read fonts can help customers know what they’re getting.

Ease of Use

This goes along with accessibility, but each customer should be able to easily open the packaging to retrieve the product inside. Ever wrestled with an item encased in tight plastic like a Jurassic mosquito stuck in amber? Packages should be designed to be easily opened with standard tools like scissors. If a product is too difficult to open (like anything packed in plastic clamshells), this can create a frustrating unboxing experience.

If instructions are necessary to open the package or to operate the product, it’s also important for those instructions to be easy to find, read, and understand.

Brand Identity

Your branding and packaging go hand in hand. This is a great opportunity to include your logo, company colors, taglines, and any other identifiers. As soon as people see the package, they should be able to recognize where it’s from. Think of the signature smile that accompanies an Amazon box or the nearly all-blue box from Chewy.com. A quick identifier that lets customers know exactly where a package is coming from without having to open the box.

Accuracy

Every line of text represents your brand identity, so make sure it’s all accurate! A single misspelling on thousands of boxes can have expensive repercussions. Error-free packaging is vital to maintaining your image as a trusted authority and leader in your industry.

You also must ensure that all information included within the packaging is correct. If there’s a user manual or guide, bullet points should be accurate and make sense.

Building a Cohesive Packaging and Branding Identity

Building a strong brand identity through packaging

Now that you understand the impact of brand identity and how to go about establishing it through packaging, it’s time to put these lessons into practice. Sit down with team members across the organization to get a sense of how they define the overall brand. Which words, themes, and values stand out the most? Then, gather customer data to see what they prioritize when choosing a company to work with. Finding the points of intersection is the key to building a cohesive identity that connects with audiences and remains authentic to the company.

Your packaging and branding identity should always align product identity, as well as with customer demands and expectations. Make sure that you see every option from the customer’s perspective to ensure a positive overall experience that reflects well on the entire organization.

Want to overhaul your brand’s packaging but need some help with the details? Request a personalized demo to transform your company’s quality control process.

Pharmacy customers asking a cashier about product info
 
 

Date: September 8, 2020 | Category: Quality | Author: Kayla Caticchio


Printing for the pharmaceutical industry is a complex process that requires skill, knowledge, and trust between both the printer and the pharmaceutical company. More than any other industry, there is no room for error when it comes to printing medical content like labels and cartons. Even the smallest error can be detrimental to a brand’s reputation, in some cases it can even be harmful to consumers. To be successful in printing for this highly-regulated industry, there are several steps that both the printer and pharma client must take to ensure a strong and long-lasting vendor-client relationship.

Establish proper communication

Multiple audits needed to ensure Pharma standardsThe process starts when the pharmaceutical company selects and evaluates a printer for their work. Quality, as opposed to cost, is at the forefront of the decision-making process when it comes to choosing a printer for pharmaceutical content. It is therefore essential that the appropriate KPIs, like quality, project turnover time, and system requirements are established at the very beginning to maintain the standards and expectations of the client. Pharma companies must openly communicate what they consider to be acceptable versus unacceptable in terms of deviations, giving printers an idea of their unique tolerances (for example, what stops the press). It is therefore critical that pharma companies successfully onboard new printing clients to avoid any miscommunication. Additionally, suppliers must go through several rounds of audits to ensure that they have proper capabilities before they even start to think about printing for pharma. These types of audits include verifying that files are properly saved and ensuring that they have processes in place for transporting packaging. Read Now: Top Tips for Selecting and Evaluating a Vendor

Expect to be scrutinized

Pharmacy customers reading product packagesSo what should a printer expect when dealing with pharmaceutical clients? Simply put, they should be prepared for a much higher level of scrutiny. Putting ink on paper is not enough to successfully deliver a job in this industry. Instead, printers must ensure that they have the proper quality systems, processes, SOPs, and certifications in place that meet their client’s quality and compliance requirements. They must continuously ensure that their systems are validated, calibrated, and re-certified on a regular basis. The speed at which medical drugs must be delivered to market is another factor to keep in mind when printing for pharma. Pharmaceutical printers must be experts at balancing time-constraints while maintaining the highest levels of quality possible. Even the smallest deviation can cause delays in the process, often resulting in re-prints that end up costing the printer money. For production schedules to remain on-track, printers must keep open communication and have experience in dealing with tight deadlines.

Invest in technology

Woman working on print inspection using GlobalVision toolsAutomation technology plays a big role in helping printers get products out the door faster without sacrificing quality. By implementing a print verification system, the risk of letting a critical error slip by drops significantly. Though errors can occur anywhere in the process, the prepress stage is one of the most common areas where deviations can be introduced. Since pharma companies rely heavily on the expertise of the printer when it comes to ensuring perfect color, barcodes, and artwork, a verification system in prepress would catch any deviations between the customer-approved file and the sample. It is also important that both the client and supplier work together to ensure that the printer has the right PDFs from the beginning. Proper file creation is crucial as repeatedly playing around with a file can lead to an increased risk of introducing an error. In keeping with the strong communication aspect of pharmaceutical printing, these types of tools also allow for inspection reporting and audit trails that give the pharma company peace-of-mind and full visibility. Finally, many printers recommend having a designated middleman on the team to act as a buffer between the printer and the pharmaceutical client.

Understanding the roles and responsibilities

Though printing for such a complex industry can seem overwhelming, the benefits of establishing a successful printer-pharma partnership far outweigh the extra steps involved in managing this process. If a pharmaceutical company properly communicates its expectations while the printer invests in proper technology and quality control processes, long-term relationships can be formed. As long as both parties trust each other and understand the crucial role they play in the process, they can experience long-term growth both independently and together.

To learn more about printing for the pharmaceutical industry, check out GlobalVision’s webinar Navigating the Relationship Between Printers and Pharmaceutical Clients.

A clip board including a checklist of items
 
 

Date: June 9, 2020 | Category: Quality | Author: Michelle Wong


There are several specific factors to consider when selecting the right vendor for your business needs. It can be a daunting experience with so many vendors offering seemingly similar services. This article will help you determine what you should be looking for when selecting a vendor, and how to evaluate its performance. 

What to look for when selecting a vendor

To start your evaluation, there are four key areas to keep in mind:

1. Is their staff well-trained and kept up-to-date with industry standards?  

Illustration of a teacher giving a course to a group students

The vendor should be able to provide you with evidence proving their level of investment into employee training. It can be in the form of internal or external training. 

Ultimately, you need to be confident in knowing that your vendor is providing the resources necessary to keep their employees up-to-date with technical product knowledge and skills, as well as operational procedures. Employees must be able to operate the technologies competently and identify any issues.


2. Do they follow standard operating procedures (SOP) to ensure safety and security?

illustration of a group of people checking a document with internal processes

The vendor should have SOPs in place that define and document internal processes for each department. There should be clear accountability, such as audit trails and system logs that allow for traceability.

Employees should be following them in the exact same way every time to ensure consistency and a reduction in errors. This is especially necessary for onboarding new employees so that they are able to get up to speed quickly. 


3. Have they implemented a solid IT security policy?

Illustration of laptop with password protection

Having a comprehensive IT security policy in place indicates that the vendor takes data security and privacy seriously. If you provide your company data to them, you need to know that it will be used according to the agreed purposes. 

Look for a vendor that has established practices and processes already in place to ensure data isn’t being used or accessed by unauthorized individuals or parties. Their IT security policy should include an acceptable use policy, data security policy, and data classification policy.


4. Are they able to provide quality metrics and key performance indicators (KPIs)?

Girl working on a desktop with conversations showing up

If you provide the vendor with specific KPIs, they need to have a way to evaluate their metrics to ensure they hit your targets. Ask the vendor what procedures they have in place to measure their operational performance.

Check if they have an internal audit program and if it’s conducted on a regular basis. Procedures need to be routinely reviewed and adapted in order to maintain the standards you require.


How to evaluate your vendor’s performance

To ensure your vendor is providing you with the level of service and quality required, they should be successfully performing against the following factors: 

illustration of product reviews

Quality control 

You need to have a full guarantee that your products are hitting the market consistently and error-free. Any errors on labels or packaging can result in expensive recalls, causing potential harm to consumers and/or damage your company brand. Vendors with quality control procedures in place are far less likely to result in such negative consequences.

Some industries are facing increasingly stringent requirements relating to product packaging, quality, and safety, so it’s absolutely essential that vendors be able to successfully meet regulatory requirements.


Project completion time 

illustration of vendor tools and equipment

It’s essential that your vendor conducts its operations in the most efficient way possible so your products are able to get to market according to business timelines. A failure to manage time and project management effectively will potentially result in delayed production.

In addition to having SOPs in place, a way for your vendor to speed up production output while reducing quality issues is by using a quality inspection system. This reduces the need for manual proofreading and visual inspection, which is at high risk for introducing errors and rework. 


a desktop computer screen with a text inspection software

Innovation and technology 

Your vendor should have top-of-the-line technology and be leaders in innovation. Evidence of this includes practicing continuous improvement and implementation of new innovations to stay competitive. Innovation in packaging design can take many forms, including introducing new technology, changes to the supply chain, and product and process improvements.

By investing in its own business, your vendor is demonstrating their commitment to providing you with the best product and service, which, in the end, benefits your customers. Your vendor will be able to better serve your needs when it comes to faster turnaround times, reduced waste levels, improved product quality, and providing a wider product range.


Tracking and reporting 

3 adults analyzing a dashboard

All vendor activities related to your business need to be transparent. You should be able to measure and monitor their performance, and they should be able to access the information required for operations. Inspection reports should be easily accessible and communicated between both parties. This includes automated performance tracking and access to a full audit trail if requested. 

Measurement can also go beyond the basic aspects of quality, delivery, and cost. Also, consider measuring the overall success of the relationship you have with your vendor and their level of accountability and responsiveness.


Evaluating your vendor saves you time and money

Doing your due diligence in selecting the right vendor and conducting a thorough evaluation of their performance is critical in achieving high-quality servicing and production. By selecting a competitive vendor that has strong quality control measures, effective project management, and invests in new technologies, you are creating a partnership that will support the long-term success of your business. 

Not only are you ensuring that your packaging is created efficiently and correctly, but benefits also include saved time and costs, which then transfer to your customers and create a better experience with your brand.