Industry professionals gathered to explore and discuss best practices in the world of packaging operations during the recent Top to Top session. The event revolved around OpX, an initiative uniting manufacturers and OEM experts to establish industry-wide best practices.

OpX (short for operational excellence), founded by the Packaging Machinery Manufacturers Institute (PMMI), connects consumer packaged goods (CPG) manufacturers and suppliers to solve common operational challenges.

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It’s the bridge from talk to action, fostering collaboration among 100+ CPG companies and 30 suppliers to create practical solutions based on shared expertise.

In this article, we delve into OpX’s work products and the positive impact they have on packaging operations.

OpX work products: a valuable resource for packaging operations

OpX, short for Operating Excellence, strives to foster collaboration between manufacturers and OEM experts, aiming to develop and disseminate standardised best practices across the packaging industry.

Their work products encompass various critical documents, such as checklists for requests for proposals, factory acceptance test (FAT) documentation, sustainability calculations, and understanding environmental, social, and governance (ESG) factors specific to North American manufacturing.

Panelists at the session shared their experiences with OpX work products, emphasising their benefits.

One panelist highlighted the adoption of OpX’s FAT documentation, praising its role in establishing standards for project management and enhancing the onboarding process for new engineers.

Additionally, the concept of virtual FAT documentation was introduced as a means to engage remote participants and gather valuable input. According to a Director of Innovation and Packaging Engineering on the panel, involving more stakeholders in the process enhances buy-in and problem-solving before equipment reaches the factory floor.

Promoting industry-wide standardisation

Another panelist stressed the significance of OpX’s work products in promoting non-competitive cooperation to improve the industry. Workforce engagement documents, FAT documentation, and total cost of ownership documents were commended as instrumental tools used by their team.

Furthermore, a call was made for broader adoption of these products, particularly the FAT document.

The session also spotlighted discussions regarding Site Acceptance Tests (SATs) and their importance. Participants favoured FATs and SATs over the CQV approach, revealing a strong preference for a SAT document from OpX, which garnered unanimous support.

Vision for the future and collaborative approach

The session concluded by offering a glimpse into OpX’s future plans. Topics on the horizon include a Vertical Startup product, aimed at organising teams, defining essential skillsets, and ensuring successful operations.

Moreover, ongoing development initiatives encompass a starter guide for IoT digitisation, updates to the journey to sustainability to encompass ESG factors, revisions to the workforce engagement document for the post-Covid era, and updates to the remote connectivity document to keep pace with technological advancements.

Finally, the report unveiled OpX’s method for developing work products. It involves identifying information gaps, selecting projects through the OpX council, and creating diverse teams to collaborate on shared best practices.

It was also highlighted that OpX welcomes end-user manufacturers as members, with OEMs invited to participate as sponsors or contributors in work product development groups.

In short, OpX’s work products are revolutionising the packaging industry by promoting efficiency, collaboration, and standardised best practices. The industry’s commitment to these principles is poised to drive lasting improvements in packaging operations.