How did it get so late so soon? It's night before it's afternoon. December is here before it's June. My goodness how the time has flewn. How did it get so late so soon?
Dr. Seuss had an amazing way of keeping things simple yet also capturing the panic and tone of a situation in his stories. In clinical supplies, speed and quality are always at the forefront, but with that comes this constant panic as if Thing 1 and Thing 2 are constantly overturning everything in your path.
- Thought you forecasted properly? . . . ’Thing 1’ comes in and throws everything into disarray leaving you with a shortage.
- Thought you locked down your study sites and had your supplies ready to go? . . . ’Thing 2’ jumps out and drops half the countries, adds a few more and holds you to original dates.
Things happen. Every study, every project, every day. But when they happen, do we always need to watch as our entire strategy flounders? When things get changed, why are we left with situations where we need supplies in 10 days, 5 days, 1 day?
On the clinical label side, we often get requests to expedite jobs. Something has changed and we need to turn around new labels over the weekend. No problem. Things happen. However, as a result, booklet labels are deemed a rate limiter in the process. The question shouldn’t be, “Can we get the labels in 7 days or 5 days or 2 days?” Urgent requests are the nature of the business. The real question should be, “Why did I need to have labels in 5 days?”. We should ask, “Are there things that can be done to allow for changes late, but not require the need for panic, expense, disruption and disarray, only to repeat the same situation next time?”. The good news is that we have the answer!
Top Tips on how to allow for changes and to take labels off the critical path:
- Explore a pooled label supply strategy. Add in as many countries as your team is considering, not just confirmed countries. Manufacture labels in bulk and keep them in inventory. By using variable print for items such as the protocol number, you immediately take supplies off the critical path. If quantities change or resupplies are needed, use existing inventory to meet the demand. This saves on cost and, more importantly, mitigates that panic that ensues when trying to meet impending study dates.
- Use a phrase library and country regulatory information database. That way you are prepared for any late stage changes. Even if a late country change happens, having information readily available allows most additions to be dealt with quickly and your label supplies are not put at risk. < Find out more about using phrase libraries - Download our eBook today >
So put ‘Thing 1 & 2’ back in the box and lock it up. Establish a solid strategy for developing labels to make sure you never need to worry about having booklet labels printed in days, while you focus on any of the other ‘Things’ that may come up.
Find out more about how our label experts can help you with your strategy today!