The economic recovery is extremely slow and shaky. I really enjoyed this WSJ article comparing Japan to the US.
It looks like we are in for a prolonged period of slow growth, if not another recession. One the best ways for companies to respond to slow sales growth is to continue to cut cost. In this environment cutting costs may be the only way to boost profit. The print supply chain management industry is all about cutting cost. Many companies look at the price of the item they are buying, the “what” part of purchasing. Our print supply chain analysis is focused on “how” you are buying.
Most printed items incur significant creative, review, fulfillment/distribution, obsolescence, administration, and archiving costs. These costs often go unreported in companies. A spend analysis that focuses only on the hard cost misses a lot of the creative design and administration costs involved with printing. A lot of printed items could easily refer to a web site such that the printed piece could be much less expensive and still allow access to the information online.
In the nineties companies moved from multiple parts of carbon-less copies to single sheets. This was due to the proliferation of laser printers and access to computer networks. We suggested to our customers that they turn 2 and 3 part forms into single sheets. These days we are suggesting companies should design templates and then make small changes for multiple versions of the same template. Then this template resides online so authorized people can make small changes like addresses and phone numbers easily for on-demand production. We also suggest not printing an item at all and use the internet to distribute the information. E-mails, blogs, social media channels can be very effective to distribute marketing and customer service information.
Many of our customers are placing items in our warehouse for us to store and ship as they need them. When combined with our online ordering system this becomes a great way to manage, control and report on the usage of items. And now we are applying this same system to corporate apparel and promotional products like pens and mugs. One of our largest clients reports saving over $500,000.00 annually by utilizing our supply chain management system. Call us if you would like to learn more – 800-445-2946.