Springpack In Article Image

James York

Managing Director | Springpack

"We carry far less excess and our stock turn has increased to over 4.8; exceeding our original target by 20%."


From bespoke cardboard boxes to personalised tape, Springpack provides its customers with the packaging their products deserve. For over 45 years, Springpack has strived to help businesses to build more cost-effective and efficient packaging operations.

Committed to strengthening its industry-leading service standards, Springpack embarked upon a business-wide optimisation initiative. As part of the 5-year plan, supply chain innovation was high on the agenda.

James York, Managing Director, explains: “As a crucial part of our customers’ distribution and shipping process, it is vital we have the right stock to fulfil their packaging requirements. However, we also must practice what we preach. This means taking every step to establish more sustainable business practices that reduce carbon emissions and eliminate waste throughout our operation.”

Why Slimstock?

From rethinking the sourcing strategy to implementing a more sustainable delivery programme, Springpack has taken bold steps to build a greener operation.

Mark Clements, Procurement Director at Springpack, explains: “To uphold our promise to provide customers with a dependable, sustainable, and cost-effective packaging solution, we are always looking for smarter ways of working.”

To establish more effective supply chain processes, Springpack joined forces with the inventory experts at Slimstock.

“To achieve our ambitious goals, we needed a partner that both understood the nuances of our operation and shared our sustainable values. I had seen the results of Slim4 first-hand in my previous company and I was confident they were the right partner to help us move forward,” adds James.


In the past, the team at Springpack manually reviewed inventory levels daily. However, this process was both labour intensive and prone to error. To provide customers with the 5-star service standard they have come to expect as the business grows, Springpack needed to bring some science to its supply chain processes.

With a focus on improving supply chain visibility and simplifying the ordering process, the packaging specialist decided to implement Slimstock’s supply chain platform, Slim4.

Despite a promising start to the optimisation project, like many businesses, Springpack soon faced significant upheaval as Covid restrictions disrupted global supply chains.

“Amidst the worst supply chain conditions we have seen in 20 years, it was important that we did not lose sight of our ambitious supply chain and sustainability objectives. Equally, to combat the immediate challenges that came with Covid-19, we needed to be able to make tricky decisions quickly,” explains Mark.


Responsive supply chain management

As Covid-19 restrictions caused wide-spread volatility, Slim4 allowed Springpack’s planning team to respond quickly to evolving market conditions.

By automatically recalculating the order advice as parameters changed, Slim4’s dynamic economic order quantity capabilities ensured Mark and his team could strike the right balance between flawless availability and optimised costs.

Mark states: “Slim4 helped us to balance inventory levels while keeping supply chain costs under tight control. By eliminating the guesswork from our ordering process, we are in a much better position to guarantee we hold the right stock at the right time.”

“Thanks to Slim4, we successfully overcame the disruption to improve service levels to 98% across our most important product lines. In a market like ours, where service is critical, this availability improvement is pivotal to building customer loyalty,” adds James.

Efficiency boost

In addition to improved service, Slim4 has also allowed the planning team to drive efficiencies throughout its inbound logistics operation. Using Slim4’s advanced container fill functionality, the planning team can now quickly optimise every supplier order with just the click of a button.

Mark explains: “With soaring freight costs and a global shortage of containers, it’s vital we make the most out of every order. By automatically considering the forecasted demand, order costs, lead times and the target service level for every SKU, our team can now order strategically to fill containers with the ‘right’ stock.”

“The ordering process is far more efficient. As a result, we carry far less excess and our stock turn has increased to over 4.8; exceeding our original target by 20%,” adds James.

Reduced carbon emissions

Highlighting how this leaner way of working supports the business’ wider sustainability goals, James states: “The operational improvements delivered by Slim4, in combination with our other initiatives, play an important role in helping us to attain our goal to become carbon neutral.”

One of the biggest benefits of Slim4 is that Springpack has attained a significant availability increase while reducing overall inventory levels.

Explaining the impact Slim4 has had on the business’ carbon goals, Mark states: “Since implementing Slim4, we have seen a significant increase in product availability. Ensuring customer orders are fulfilled on time & in full reduces backorders and therefore minimises the need for repeat deliveries reducing the overall number of truckloads.”

“By realigning inventory levels, Slim4 has helped us to hit our availability targets with less stock. As a result, we have reduced our external storage capacity by two-thirds. Furthermore, we have reduced internal transfers between our distribution centre and the external storage facility by 80%; reducing our carbon impact.”

Next steps

After completing the 5-year plan a year ahead of schedule, Mark and James are now looking to the future. Focused on attaining further efficiency and sustainability improvements, the team at Springpack are working hard to deliver the business’ new objectives.

With continued growth on the horizon, Springpack will soon move to a larger warehouse facility. Explaining how Slim4 will support this transition, Mark states: “We will have more space to negotiate larger volume discounts from our suppliers. However, with Slim4 in our toolkit, we can ensure that these strategic purchases are calculated.”

Reflecting on the success of the project, James goes on to conclude: “We are now far more proactive and, as a result, our supply chain is leaner than ever before. We are excited to work with Slimstock as we embark upon the next phase of our optimisation journey.”