Packaging industry needs to implement PLM software now

1 min read

The packaging industry is behind the times and needs to modernise with systems to improve quality and cut costs and lead times, if it is to survive.

That's the warning from Neil Howe, director at consultancy Brandbridge, who wants the fast moving consumer goods (FMCG) industries to do the same as aerospace and automotive, and implement PLM-based (product lifecycle management) processes. "The majority of the industry is essentially living in the dark ages. It's possible to significantly drive down costs by simply using the right technology at the right time," insists Howe. "PLM software can be implemented to streamline design through to manufacturing and production, helping achieve consistency across packaging design and product lifecycles," he adds. Howe suggests that will give packaging companies a higher level of control and ownership of the process, which cuts costs. "The aerospace and automotive industries use PLM to solve problems and drive complexity on a day-to-day basis, and packaging businesses should learn from this," he says. And, as for quantifying likely improvements Howe estimates it takes around twice as long to get a product to market without using PLM, due to a lack of technical compliance, poor process models, re-learning information previously learned and product pack design delays. "Packaging production is the Cinderella of the FMCG industry – often overlooked. Production and technical compliance are afterthoughts in the design process, yet they are the most important sales tools," comments Howe.