A switch to bespoke equipment results in projected £514,000 saving for family-run business

A lot of the work we do here at Flow focuses on saving our clients money on their mailing and fulfillment requirements, and this case study highlights just one of the ways in which we’re often able to save our clients considerable amounts of money.

In this instance, the client is a successful, family-run company who sell a specialist white label product related to blue chip companies, and their key lead generator is a piece of direct mail that gets mailed out with a brochure and a sequentially numbered metal fob matched and affixed to the brochure.

 

Here’s what they wanted us to do:

Annually this client sends out between 1.25 million and 2 million items, and came to us with a complex brief:

• To guarantee the availability of stock
• Reduce the lead-time from order of item to the fulfillment of that item
• Reduce costs
• Develop newer, more modern and innovative solution
• Quite a tall order, but we like a challenge!

Here’s how we did it:

The process the client was using before our intervention involved the printing of over 50 types of brochure followed by the manual application of fobs using glue dots. These were then boxed and supplied to the client in type.

The remainder of the work was completed via an in-house team who print each daily order onto an appropriate letterhead.

Printed letters were then taken in batches to their respective stations where each was manually folded in half and the letters recipient was manually identified via the house data system, an appropriate brochure and metal fob are selected, the unique reference from the key fob was manually entered in association with the recipient detail.

Both items were then collated and hand inserted to an envelope and posted unsorted.

In other words, A LOT of manual work. We sought to address that, and quickly.

Our first priority was to automate the entire process, and reducing the manual labour involved as a result.

Clearly the original process required a lot of physical actions, and we knew that if we could eradicate some of those, we could achieve significant savings throughout the entire process.
To do that, we needed the right machinery, and with that in mind, we commissioned the purchase of an envelope enclosing system and adapted it to accommodate a glue line, pick & place feeder and camera matching equipment.

The data we were handling was highly sensitive, so we improved our already robust in-house data handling process to align with ISO27001 standards.

Here’s what happened:

Unsurprisingly, the client was pretty pleased with our proposal, and decided to go ahead with it, with the combination of improved print management services, automated fulfillment and discounted mail resulted in dramatic savings of predicted at £514,000 over the three year contract.

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