Packsize and Staples Win CSCMP Supply Chain Innovation Award

Earlier this month, Packsize and Staples announced that we won CSCMP’s 2013 Supply Chain Innovation Award. A joint presentation was given at the Supply Chain Innovations of the Year educational track at CSCMP’s annual conference by Staples and Packsize.

There were originally 50 submissions and five finalists for the award. The other finalists included Pepsi, IBM, and Motorolla. It was a very impressive lineup and we were honored to be included with such wonderful companies.

So why is Packsize technology the Supply Chain Innovation of the year? Well, I would like to share with you some of the highlights of our presentation at CSCMP.

A Global Challenge

Corrugated cardboard is the most commonly used packaging material on Earth. And rightly so—it’s the cheapest, cleanest, and most versatile option available to businesses. 472 billion square feet of it is forecasted to be produced in North America this year.

And yet, 250 million tons of solid waste is produced in the US every year. 30 percent of that comes from containers and packaging, with over half of that packaging waste being cardboard. In fact, paper and paperboard account for 15 percent of all trash we throw out every year(source: EPA). This kind of trash generation is not sustainable.

Staples was feeling the pain of this problem. As the world’s largest office products company, and the world’s second largest internet retailer, Staples ships a lot of boxes every day. However, they only carried a handful of box types. This resulted in a lot of empty space and a huge number of customer complaints for “excessive packaging.”

The Packsize Solution

After investigating several possible solutions, Staples agreed to a Packsize pilot program. Packsize was a good fit because of its flexible packaging solutions and its ability to produce any sized box on demand.

The solution was a huge success. Packsize has now been implemented in Staples fulfillment centers across the country.

The Results

I’ll let the pictures speak for themselves here. Below we see a pallet of 29 boxes, all ordered from Staples before the implementation of Packsize. We unpacked all those boxes and repackaged the items using On Demand Packaging®. As you can see, the amount of empty space has been significantly reduced.

Staples packaging before and after

It’s hard to believe the same pallet of items is in both pictures.


Many of our other findings show that the Packsize integration has been an overwhelming success:

  • Corrugated cardboard usage has dropped by over 15%
  • Air pillow use has been reduced by 60%
  • Customer satisfaction has been greatly increased for the “size of box” and “way order was packaged”
  • The vast majority of Staples employees agree—Packsize has made their jobs easier
  • When fully implemented, the solution will save the equivalent of 100,000 trees every year

Key Takeaways

First of all, address your #1 customer complaint today! Second, you can have it all. This includes an improved customer experience, extra supply chain efficiencies, increased sustainability, and still save money.

If you would like Packsize to do for you what it did for Staples, click the link below and download the Staples press release, our “Smallest Possible Box” whitepaper, and our iQ Fusion product sheet. Take steps to have it all today!