Packaging Advice

How to select the right impact indicator for your needs

6 mins

A ShockWatch impact indicator will alert the viewer to potential danger, show any concealed damage, and clarify responsibility. That’s why it is such an asset to have when shipping sensitive or breakable products, particularly for industries such as manufacturing, distribution, and shipping.

It is said that 34% of packaging related returns are due to product damage, and this can have a real impact on your business’s reputation. These statistics really demonstrate just how crucial protective packaging is.

So, how can you ensure that your products are protected and delivered safely? This is where impact indicators come in. In this article, we will be highlighting how you can select the right impact indicator for your business’s needs.

ShockWatch 2 Impact Indicator

In any supply chain, there will be at least one step that requires items or products to be transported from one location to another. There may be even multiple checkpoints that a package is required to go through if a supply chain is more complex. This means that by the time a person or businesses receives the package, it has likely passed through several hands which increases the chances of it becoming damaged.

ShockWatch 2 is an impact indicator that changes colour to bright red when rough handling has occurred. Thanks to this device, you can quickly identify materials or products that need scrutiny for damage. It is also tamper-proof, which reduces chances of stakeholders in the supply chain meddling with the device. On top of this, ShockWatch 2 even contains a serial number so that you can confirm that the indicator has not been replaced after it had been triggered. It’s good practice to place an additional indicator inside the package, or place marking such as a logo on top of the exterior indicator to ensure it cannot be replaced.

Another benefit of having a ShockWatch 2 indicator on a package, is when handlers in the distribution network see the device, they tend to handle the package more carefully! This is because they know that the ShockWatch can be used to assign accountability when mishandling takes place. This device goes beyond just monitoring a package as by tracking impact data, shippers and carriers are able to determine where the damage occurred so they can take steps to prevent future damage by altering packaging, routes, procedures, or supply chain partners.

ShockWatch 2 can really help shippers and their customers to take a step to reduce overall supply chain costs so if your business is currently being impacted by damage-related costs, then investing in a ShockWatch 2 Impact Indicator will be largely beneficial for your business.

ShockWatch 2 benefits overview

  • Acts as a visual deterrent to improper handling
  • Reduces mishandling through awareness
  • Provides indisputable evidence of mishandling
  • Promotes chain of accountability for all product handling
  • Confirms effectiveness of packaging
  • Helps to identify trouble spots in the supply chain
  • Helps to increase quality of the product from dock to dock

Which ShockWatch 2 Impact Indicator is best for your application?

To make sure you select the right impact indicator, it’s best to start with shipment size and weight. The guide below provides a starting point for sensitivity selection. The more fragile products may require a more sensitive (lower G) indicator, whereas products with more robust packaging could need a less sensitive (higher G) indicator.

shockwatch supply chain

ShockWatch RFID Impact Indicator

If you are re-evaluating and improving your supply chain visibility, then ShockWatch RFID could be a gamechanger. This is because it is proven to drastically improve traceability of products and automating operational processes, which has a positive impact on ensuring accurate data, reducing labour costs, setting high levels of accountability across all stages, whilst also increasing visibility.

What is RFID and what does it stand for?

RFID stands for ‘radio frequency identification’ and is used across multiple industries. It’s not a new technology either! In fact, RFID has been around since World War II where a transmitter was placed on every British plane. These transmitters then received signals from the radar, and afterwards, they broadcasted a signal which identified a person as a friend or foe.

Of course, today, a popular way RFID technology is used is through tags called ‘smart labels’ and readers that store information about the product.  These tags can be attached to a wide variety of goods and products in order to track their status through a larger system such as supply chain management software.

How do RFID indicators work for supply chain management?

RFID impact indicators are used across many industries that reply on a supply chain network, and it is a critical component of daily operations. RFID technology is great for tracking a wide range of goods including: retail items, medical supplies, pharmaceuticals, vehicles, pets, and livestock, as well as food and beverage. RFID technology aids companies in improving inventory control and our ShockWatch RFID impact indicator allows companies to leverage the inventory tracking benefits of RFID and the benefits of an impact monitoring program.

With ShockWatch RFID, the need for visual inspections is greatly reduced. This means that when shipments are scanned, the receiver will know if there has been a potentially damaging impact. When the label is activated, inventory can be isolated for further inspection, and if the shipment has received no impact, then the shipment can be moved into saleable inventory.

If your supply chain is set up to be able to read RFID and you are looking for an impact monitoring program that reduces damage, refines supply chain processes so mishandling can be prevented, as well as drives down costs, then ShockWatch RFID will be the perfect solution. The ShockWatch RFID is armed with data making it possible to track down trouble spots in the supply chain and implement process changes to improve outcomes. However, if your supply chain does not have access to a reader, then ShockWatch 2 may be a better solution for you.

ShockWatch RFID benefits overview

  • Easy to add into your current RFID program
  • Field-armable
  • Tamper-proof
  • UHF
  • Passive
  • Serialised
  • No batteries or wires

Which ShockWatch RFID Impact Indicator is best for your application?

When choosing a ShockWatch RFID Indicator, you need to consider the size and weight of your shipment. The guide below should be used as a starting point, and shows which indicator will be best suited, taking into account product fragility and packaging.

ShockWatch Impact Indicators from Swiftpak

ShockWatch Impact Indicators are one of the many ways you can improve the protection of your products during transportation. To find out more about our new Impact Indicator range, visit our website today. Alternatively, if you are looking to reduce damages, simply contact us and we will be happy to assist.