Packaging Development and Design Process Flowchart - Esko

Does Your Team Waste Time in the Packaging Design and Development Process?

Packaging development and design is not without its challenges. The process is often lengthy, laborious, and inefficient. Check out the packaging design flowchart to see common challenges and how Esko | Brand Solutions can help you each step of the way.

Download the Flowchart

Step 1: Project Brief, Specification, and Asset Collection

A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step, but the journey to create or update packaging design starts with the almighty brief.

Whether starting from scratch or adjusting a present design, it’s critical to plan for success. An orderly flow must be followed, including determining the scope, specifications, and timeline of the project in advance.

Common Challenges at this Step:

  • Determining the optimal project workflow
  • Inefficient processes that lead to slower speed-to-market and lost revenue
  • Getting all stakeholders on the same page
  • Finding existing assets to re-use or update rather than starting from scratch

How Esko Can Help:

  • WebCenter offers a central source for setting up your project’s workflow, connecting all stakeholders, and providing a bird’s-eye view of the entire process
  • MediaBeacon DAM provides the ability to upload and retrieve your packaging and artwork assets. Reuse and re-purpose your prior assets rather than starting from scratch

Step 2: Artwork and Structural Package Design Creation

After the brief, it’s time to start creating a new design or updating an existing one. The packaging engineer needs to design a structural, protective pack for the product to go in and a designer needs to develop the artwork to accompany it.

The design team must be in sync every step of the way.

Common Challenges at this Step:

  • Coordinating updates across all versions of a package design
  • Designing 3D assets in 2D can lead to confusion and errors
  • Failing to understand how a package design will look on store shelves
  • Confusion about package size requirements
  • The design is created in a form that’s not print-ready and has to go through additional steps before printing

How Esko Can Help:

  • Studio visualization software for designers and converters enables better 3D artwork and packaging design
  • ArtiosCAD simplifies the creation of 2D and 3D structural designs, resizes designs to fit products, and creates internal fitments
  • Store Visualizer allows designers to create a virtual retail environment, test the visual impact of designs, and determine the best shelf placement
  • Cape Pack optimizes product size for shipping, creates new case sizes, and builds efficient pallet patterns
  • Designs created using Esko products are print-ready so they can easily be sent to suppliers for production

Step 3: The Review and Approval Process

When a design is ready for review, it’s time to collect feedback.

This step in the packaging development and design process is notoriously a big source of bottlenecks and errors, especially when relying upon a manual system to collect and distribute feedback.

Common Challenges at This Step

  • Corralling feedback from necessary stakeholders
  • Relying on email chains, spreadsheets, or physical paper approvals
  • Waiting for and collating numerous rounds of revisions
  • Reviewers who mistakenly provide feedback on outdated designs

How Esko Can Help

  • WebCenter automates the review and approval process and allows multiple reviewers to annotate a document at the same time
  • Reviewers are notified when their approval is needed and project managers can see who has and hasn't provided feedback
  • The WebCenter compare tool enables designers and approvers to review document versions side by side
  • WebCenter provides a historical record of the design process to date in a single online source

Step 4: Distributing Artwork, Label, and Packaging Assets Through E-Commerce

Many brands rely on e-commerce for their success and need a better way to keep product packshots up-to-date.

Manual packshot processes impede efficiency and thus are time-consuming and expensive.

Common Challenges at This Step

  • Commissioning packshots for new products is already a lengthy, manual, and expensive process
  • Modifying packshots is a significant cause of inefficiency
  • It’s difficult to manage the different views required from varying e-commerce partners
  • The physical product packaging needs to be created as a sample before packaging approval or product photography can begin

How Esko Can Help

  • Automatically create packshots using the 3D shape with all artwork in any combination of views, sizes, resolutions, and file formats with optional backgrounds, shadows, and floor reflections – which can be sent directly to e-commerce partners
  • Save time and money by creating a digital twin of the product before the physical packaging has been produced
  • The digital twin provides the ability to send product packaging through approval cycles without the need to wait for a physical proof

Step 5: Distribution to Printing and Production

Sending a finalized design to print is, unfortunately, not as easy as it sounds. There are many potential hurdles between submitting a design and getting it produced exactly as intended.

Common Challenges at This Step

  • Ensuring brand design requirements are followed
  • Producing color specifications correctly and maintaining those specifications throughout many steps and partners in the supply chain
  • Facilitating costly redo’s

How Esko Can Help

  • WebCenter Color Trace tracks color quality and consistency among all internal and external brand partners and suppliers
  • Color Trace structures the collection of print specifications, communicates them automatically to the supply chain, and returns a scorecard for each job
  • Information generated by Color Trace is incorporated into the workflow to provide visibility and standardized color processes

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