Everyone’s an expert, or at least that’s the way it might seem if you’re looking for a new vendor or service provider. Experience and knowledge are valuable commodities, so it’s not surprising that most companies want to position themselves as experts. The truth, though, is that real expertise can be hard to find.
That’s especially true in the world of military packaging. If you’re looking for a military packaging partner, you’ll likely find plenty of companies that position themselves as experts. However, having the capability to package military goods isn’t the same as being an expert.
Fortunately, you can identify the true experts by asking about how well they understand the military’s complex packaging rules and guidelines. Military packaging experts should also be able to advise you on how best to meet tight deadlines and navigate the military’s administrative structure. Below are a few things to look for in a military packaging expert:
They Know How MIL-STD-2073 Applies to Your Product
If you aren’t familiar with MIL-STD-2073, now may be the time to get familiar with it. It’s the detailed, comprehensive document that lays out the packaging rules and guidelines for military vendors. If you fail to comply with MIL-STD-2073, your payments could be delayed or you may even lose your military contract.
MIL-STD-2073 can be complex and intimidating. It covers everything from protective packaging to waterproof bags to rigid containers and more. It may force you to package your military shipments differently than you would pack for other vendors. You may even have difficulty understanding which part of the document applies to your products.
An expert military packaging company should be able to advise you on how best to comply with the rules. They can analyze your product and then develop a packaging process that aligns with MIL-STD-2073 so you stay in compliance.
They Can Advise You on How Best to Meet the Military’s Tight Delivery Deadlines
The military may be slow to award contracts or process payments, but they move at a faster rate when they place orders. It’s not uncommon for the military to expect fast turnaround times from vendors. Those tight deadlines could put you under some serious pressure.
An expert military packager should help you implement processes to meet even the toughest military deadlines. For instance, the packaging company may design, build, and implement a semi-automated packaging process that gets your products in containers and out the door in less time. Or they may suggest that you warehouse product in their packaging facilities to reduce the timeline.
They Can Help You Get Paid Faster.
Of course, the whole point of working with the military — or any customer for that matter — is to deliver your products and get paid. With the military, though, you need to meet a few benchmarks before the military’s back office will pay your invoice.
First, you need to submit your invoice through the military’s online portal. This system is known as iRAPT, which stands for Invoice, Receipt, Acceptance, and Property Transfer. If your invoice is incorrect or missing information, it could be rejected, causing delays in the payment process.
Your shipment also has to pass the military’s QA process. After the products are packaged, a quality assurance representative will inspect the containers and materials within seven business days. Your products won’t ship until the QAR gives his or her okay.
An expert military packager can help you with both of these steps. They can submit your invoice through iRAPT and then address any issues or concerns that may arise. They can also work directly with the QAR to get your inspection performed quickly. If the QAR has concerns, the packager can take fast corrective action.
An expert military packager doesn’t simply package and ship your product. They work as your partner through the entire military supply process. They share your goal of getting product shipped, delivered, and accepted as fast as possible so you can get paid. And they also work with you to provide high-level service to the military so you are better positioned to win future bids. Don’t settle for military packaging company. Look for a military packaging expert.