Monday, January 20, 2014
Product Design and the Environment
In the link below, there is a product design example from Xerox that I found very interesting. The article shows that providing environmentally friendly designed products, the business can also save money in its supply chain.
Xerox is well known for selling copier machines. The company identified that these copier machines have parts that can be used in new machines. By designing new products to use the same parts, Xerox avoided the purchase of new and different parts saving the company several hundreds of million dollars a year. Moreover, Xerox created a take-back program for customers to take the burden of disposing the machine to the company. This program ensures that Xerox has a supply of used parts.
Another interesting point raised in the article is about packaging. Packaging is an important part of product design and has an effect of the supply chain. “Excess packaging reduces the quantity shipped per shipment, increases the fuel consumption per unit shipped, and requires proper disposal after use.” HP redesign the packaging for a camera and was able to increase the number of units shipped per shipment from 300 to 720 and reducing the weight by 175 grams per unit.