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Pharmaceutical Manufacturing and Packing Sourcer

Quality Partnerships

 

Often ignored in relations between the supplier and customer, specifications are the foundation for the entire project: they can be used to identify expectations and help the supplier provide customer satisfaction. The document therefore acts as a reference throughout the project and ensures that the desired objective is achieved.

The purpose of this article is to demonstrate the advantages of using a clear set of specifications established by the customer who is looking for an insulated or refrigerated box. The consequences of not having a complete set of specifications will first be described, followed by a practical guide to the minimum information required.

THE ADVANTAGES OF SPECIFICATIONS

‘If it had this feature, I would have bought it straight away. But as it is, I’m not sure...’ Most of us have probably felt this way at some point when considering whether to buy a new piece of equipment. It does not necessarily cast doubt on the item itself, but the lack of that little something extra makes us hesitate about whether to buy or not. In the case of consumer goods, research is conducted into what is expected of a target product, a set of specifications is then drawn up, setting out the features the new product has to have. This will make it possible to reach the widest possible public target.

The situation changes slightly when it comes to developing a product specifically for a customer. The latter must first stipulate what is required before design work can begin on the product itself, which is not available as a ‘standard’ item. Quite often the requirements are obvious, but unfortunately, they may be badly defined. The existence of a clear and precise set of specifications established by the customer has two main advantages:

- It demonstrates that the requirements have been defined and clarified internally before contacting the supplier. In general, the involvement of different departments (purchasing, logistics, quality, and so on) is highly recommended, so that the requirements of each one are known and discussed in the event of non-compatibility


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Having graduated from the Ecole des Mines in France in 2004, Erika Oudin began her career in the food industry sector. Having specialised in research and development, she decided to change direction and joined the design office of Sofrigam in 2006. Her general training formation, primarily in process engineering, enabled her to settle in rapidly and take charge of packaging development and qualification in response to the specific needs of the pharmaceutical and food industry. Email: erika.oudin@sofrigam.com
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