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National Puzzle Day

Edition: February / 2019National Puzzle Day

AP&P Celebrates National Puzzle Day

What's Happening

National Puzzle Day was on January 29th, and we celebrated by encouraging our team members to take a break and spend a little time working on a word search puzzle!

It's been proven that when we work on puzzles and other brain exercises, we utilize both sides of our brain. It also improves memory, cognitive function, and problem-solving skills. But honestly, we just think it's fun! So go ahead, take a break and see if you can find all the words below in our word search!

AP&P Word Search February 2019How Efficient Packaging Can Improve Your Bottom Line

Tips & How-To's

Packaging affects many aspects of a company's product line and business growth. Revenue growth and cost reduction are linked directly to the way that you package and ship your products. Everything from the materials to the shipping method used can change your costs, and how they are distributed. Packaging efficiency is key and it can make or break your success.

We've prepared a list of six ways that improving your packaging efficiency can improve your production process and promote business growth:

1. Gather Data
Prices of raw materials change monthly, and sometimes daily. These price changes affect your packaging costs greatly. For example, paper and polyolefin prices can fluctuate significantly from month-to-month, and depending on how often you are purchasing packaging items that contain these materials, this can have a significant impact on your packaging costs. One way to combat these changes is to buy in bulk. If you have the storage space available and can estimate your usage for a six month period instead of one month, consider increasing your packaging order. Buying a six month supply will decrease your cost per piece, offsetting any increases you may see. Another good idea is to work with a supplier that you can trust to keep an eye on material costs for you so that you don't have to.

2. Get Rid of Last-Minute Decisions
One mistake that a lot of businesses make is leaving their packaging decisions until the very end of the production process. This often times means paying more for packaging, due to not taking the time to plan out and find the best (and least expensive) packaging solution for the job. So keeping your packaging top-of-mind and making decisions earlier in the process can really keep your costs down.

3. Reduce Labels
Many companies looking to lower their packaging costs are opting for printed packaging instead of labels. Purchasing labels to stick onto your packaging adds on to your packaging costs by not only the cost of the labels, but the time it takes to place the labels on your packaging. Eliminating this step in the process saves both time and money. Another thing to consider - does your packaging need that 4-color process printing? You can save a great deal by opting for one color print, or simplifying your design, too.

4. Upgrade and Maintain Packaging Machinery
It is important to review and analyze your production process, including the packaging routinely. As production increases, packaging machinery should be upgraded to keep up. Slow machinery should be replaced with updated faster equipment, and multiple machines should be replaced with multi-tasking machinery that can increase efficiency. This will not only improve speed, but can cut out some of your labor costs.

It's also very important to create a regular inspection and maintenance schedule to ensure that your packaging equipment is performing at its' peak. This will ensure the longevity and reliability of your machinery, reducing downtime and identifying issues before they become a costly problem.

5. Downgauge and Automate
Flexible plastics like stretch film are formulated to be durable enough to protect and hold large unitized loads while in transit. However, new, lighter gauges of film are now able to handle more load capacity than they used to. Downgauging your film can save you money while still providing the protection you need. Also, if you are still packaging by hand, automating your packaging process offers a greater cost reduction, along with the ability to run a faster production.

6. Start Today
The longer you put off analyzing your packaging process and evaluating your needs, the more you are spending without need. The route that you decide to take with your packaging is up to you, but our highly trained staff of packaging experts are here to help you analyze and provide solutions.
Contact us today to work with one of our amazing packaging experts who will analyze your current packaging and come up with a solution to minimize damage!

LuAnne BaxterLuAnne Baxter

Meet Our Team

LuAnne is a mother of two children: Jamie (age 27), and Richard (age 24). She also has two cats (Sam & Dean), and two dogs (Lola & Sarah). She joined the AP&P team a month ago, as an Account Manager.

Prior to working with us, LuAnne worked in customer service for eight years. Before that, she held many different positions, including: Administrative Assistant, Religious Education Coordinator, Lunch Lady (while her kids were in school), Voicemail Coordinator/Customer Service Rep for a dating service, Marketing & Communications Coordinator, and Administrative Assistant in the insurance industry.

She was born in Indianapolis, Indiana, and moved to Illinois when she was a teenager. She lived in Illinois until she was in her twenties, when she got married and moved to Wisconsin.

LuAnne enjoys developing relationships with customers, and making sure that they know that they can count on her. She recently attended hazmat training in Oklahoma, and prior to that, she was trained as an auditor for the ISO program at GLP.

In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her children and their significant others. She also enjoys spending time with her pets, going to the movies, walking and crocheting. Right now, the majority of her free time is spent packing, as she is in the process of getting her house ready to put it on the market.