Keeping your eye on profits at peak

Keeping your eye on profits at peak

Is anyone feeling overwhelmed this time of year? If the answer is yes, you’re not alone!

I ran a print-on-demand plant for quite a few years. Looking back, as financially attractive as peak season is, I don’t remember the great profits as much as I remember the stress! 

Operating in a 7-day 2 and 3-shift pattern coupled with challenges like equipment breakdowns, delayed stock deliveries and rostering hassles just makes it a really hard time for everyone. 

With the sheer size of the cash receipts and absolute gross profit, it’s easy to focus on the dollars earned, rather than the operating margin. 

So you shift your financial focus a bit. Does it matter? When so much energy is going into the day to day work, it’s tempting to let the focus slip to delivery and away from other elements. 

Issues like staff productivity, wastage levels and margin by product code are, quite frankly, lower priority.

Unfortunately, this is where the real money is made.

Taking your eye off the ball can cost you significantly in the long run.

So what’s my advice?

At this time of year, more than ever, it’s so important to be able to see where performance, error and productivity affect your overall performance.  

I know it’s a stressful time but, despite the pressure everyone is under, don’t let your gaze wander too far from your financial and yield fundamentals – your profit outcome hinges on it.

Andrew Smith

Andrew Smith is the CEO of ZenSmart, a leading workflow automation platform that streamlines manufacturing in On Demand plants across the world.

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