Color Label Solutions

Color Label Solutions

Monday, January 28, 2013

Label Room Woes

While traveling last week to visit a prospect, I was taken into the label room below (and immediately though that it was a good image for a post!).  


Not to long ago, I visited a company with this label room.


Do you or do one of your customers have a room like this in their operation?

If you or your customers have this type of label room, then you have an opportunity to reduce costs and increase profitability in the operation dramatically. In this post, I like to describe three cost reduction/profit opportunities my customers or I have found by moving to print on demand color labels. 

In my travels selling or deploying print on-demand color labels, I have seen many companies with a room or cabinets full of preprinted, prepaid labels that may require an addition step to print variable data.  I have heard these companies described as “two-steppers”.   Two-Steppers design, send proofs, review proofs, purchase, receive and store preprinted labels in cabinets or rooms.  Once they have the preprinted labels, these companies pick, insert in printers, print variable data and put-away the preprinted labels back into the label rooms.  The two step process of preprinting and then adding variable data is why these types of companies are called two-steppers.

The problem with a two-step process is that it costs money and decreases profitability in three key ways!  First, a two-step process increases waste costs.    Do you or your customers have trash bins full of labels?


When you purchase large minimum-order quantities of labels for each SKU, you risk the possibility of the labels becoming obsolescent.  You may remember an earlier post covering KBI.  Over the past 18 months, this company had thrown away thousands of dollars of labels.  Now KBI are continuously improving their operation and reducing their waste costs by moving to print on-demand color labels:

Second, a two-step label process takes more time than a single step process.  Jaclo Plumbing went from cabinets full of labels:



To a print room.


This process not only improved the look of their labels (which opened up new distribution and increased sales).

But also, Jaclo reduced labor in their manufacturing plant/warehouse by 1 man-year.  Now Jaclo starts with white labels and has eliminated the process to pick and put away preprinted labels.  You can learn more about Jaclo’s story here:

Third, a company using print on-demand labels can design and print labels at the last possible moment.  Mercury Medical reduced costs, specifically the costs from new regulatory label requirements, by moving to print on-demand color labels.   By changing from a two-step to a single-step process, Mercury Medical can redesign and print new labels with no incremental costs.  This new, more flexible process enabled them to reduce their total label costs by 67% even though any individual label costs more.

Lastly, a single step, print on-demand color label process will reduce other costs; such as errors/mistakes, plate, freight, administration, receiving, inventory carrying and many other costs that can’t be easily identified. 

Overall, most people would agree that a 1-step is better than a 2-step process.  If you have a label room like the ones pictured in this post, consider moving to print on-demand color labels.  You and the managers who worry about costs and profitability will be glad you did.

Guy Mikel

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