Before tackling product support and new product development, it is important to be familiar with our Herbal Papaya company, and have worked in customer service and admin to understand that process.
Here is the best overview of who our vendors are, how to build each product, and what the prices are for each component:
1. Roll Out Form Prior to product shipment
2. Reorder form A checklist of things to do when reordering an existing product
A: Supporting Current (Existing) Products
1. Review existing processes and documentation:
- Gain a broad understanding of our herbal papaya product/department flowchart (pdf version) (This illustrates where our raw materials come from, where and how they are processed, and how they eventually get to our customers.
- Additionally, you will need to review an in-depth overview of our current products. Ensure that this document is updated every quarter.
- You will also need to learn about our current co-packers and vendors, along with the specifics of the products they co-pack/manufacture and how we order from them.
- Learn about our warehouse and fulfillment center (EFS) and managing inventory by watch videos here**.
- Additionally, learn about our product inventory life-cycle so that you can understand when to re-order inventory items so that we maintain inventory always (never run out) and we don't order too much to risk expiration.
- Ask your supervisor to introduce you to our Book keeper. As relates to you, the book keeper:
- Helps to create Purchase Orders for inventory re-order
- Works with you to ensure monthly inventory sync happens between warehouse and our online accounting service (Quickbooks) through an integrator app called Teapplix. You will be managing this integration. Learn more about this integration and what needs to be done.
2. Re-ordering Inventory items from Vendors to be sent to our warehouse directly:
A. Keeping all inventory items in stock:
i. Review all EFS items on a weekly basis and shift SKU's between cases and singles in order to keep both in stock.
ii. Review all Amazon channel inventories to keep all items in stock. In particular Amazon-Uk and Amazon-canada FBA accounts.
B. Forecasting when to order again
i. Copy and fill this sheet to forecast reorders:
C. Ordering inventory items from Vendors to be sent to our Warehouse directly:
Raw materials (or what we call Raws) are the ingredients we purchase in bulk to use to build our products. This includes items like dried papaya leaves, dried papaya seed (powder or whole), green or ripe papaya fruit powder. These raws have to be either co-packaged into retail packs, or blended/mixed or processed into other finished products. They are not sold directly to our customers.
For our raw materials ensure you create lot/batch numbers each time they are ordered following this format:
We use a Lot Number System which follows this format: PL-O-20160526-GFB-SL (PL = Crop name e.g. Papaya Leaves; O = Organic; 20160526 = year month day of production; GFB = Vendor Name (Green Fields Bio); SL = Country of Origin (Sri Lanka)
- Our Tea Products - pure and various flavors : For this product, we order various build parts (dried leaves, tea box packages, over-wraps, tags, labels, stand-up pouches/packaging, etc), and then assemble at co-packer location. Ask book keeper to provide PO.
- Liquid Extract : For this product, we provide dried organic leaves to our co-packer, along with a PO, and they then provide all other ingredients and complete co-packing including labels, packaging, etc.
- Capsules : This is our only product that is complete turnkey co-packed and delivered by our contract manufacturer. (This means the contract manufacturer handles everything from raw material sourcing, label printing, and package sourcing). We only provide them with a Purchase order (PO) and initial payment and they deliver finished product.
- Graviola products *** coming soon***
**Important steps to note when re-ordering inventory:
- Request label and batch sign off sheets.
- Ensure that expiry date (not manufacture date) and batch number are printed on the label or bottle.
- Ensure that products are packaged in case quantity and checked into EFS as 50% cases and 50% unit quantity.
- Find our Target Pricing HERE
C. Shipping inventory:
To ship inventory use our freight quote account to schedule pictu up. Watch this video on how to set up a shipment in freightquote and send Bill of Laden (BoL) to the warehouse.
*CRITICAL: Ensure to include a packing list which includes product SKU numbers, Amount of products shipped, and Product/Raw material batch/lot numbers if applicable.
3. Quality Control Measures
Pre-Inventory Order: Ensure you collect the appropriate product certifications (e.g. CoA,) and documentations (E.g. FDA inspections, cGMP certifications) from co-packers and suppliers.
- Each product will have a folder where these certifications are kept, inside your Product Development folder on Google Drive. Please upload all current certifications to the perspective folders as you receive them.
Post-Inventory Delivery to our warehouse: Once new batch of inventory or products are delivered to our warehouse, ensure to perform the following quality control measures:
- Order 2 bottles of any/all new batch of products to yourself AND for your supervisor to inspect and perform QC pass. View the process of inspection or new batch inspection here.
- Log all Retained samples (and information required) in this Retained samples LOG File.
- Review our materials review and disposition policy
IMPORTANT DOCUMENTS TO REVIEW FOR COMPLIANCE:
- Review our materials review and disposition policy found here.
- If a customer complaint is escalated, view procedure to deal with this. Fill in the form for customer complaint.
- If a product is recalled due to major (red) issue described here, place, view this procedure to understand how to handle this.
- View all other Standard Operating Procedures: SoPs.
B: New Product Development
Use this form to guide you through the process:
1. Product Research and Business Plan for New Product
New product evaluation to determine if we will proceed with this product should follow the guidelines outlined here and evaluate break even/profitability of product using this template.
For each new product we want to launch, evaluate the product market viability by:
(a) Research potential co-packers, cost, raw material suppliers and minimum order quantity. Here is an excellent article on how to find co-packers: http://www.claytowne.com/beats-digging-ditches/resources/co-packers-and-private-labelers/
(b) Create a business model using guidelines and template specified here to address the following:
All the above points should go into a 4 - 5 page business plan for the product to help us determine if we want to develop this product.
Target market for the products including target customers (age, geographic location, income, where they shop, etc)
- Craft product description and unique selling/value proposition
- Perform competitor analysis in the market place. Provide a list of competitors already selling the products, what products they have and what price points.
- Perform cost pricing analysis including cost of raw materials, cost of manufacturing, minimum order quantity, suggested sale price, wholesale price for retailers, break even analysis (number of products we need to sell to recover our investment and how long it would take), Expected return on investment over one year (ROI), Expected annual sales volume, forecasted revenue, sales plan (e.g. channels, advertising websites or sales ideas etc) and budget to launch the product.
- Perform Industry analysis - what is the need, how large is the market,
See sample of Herbal Graviola and Graviola Leaf & Fruit Product Concept sheet and Business plan.
2. Perform Initial Market Test:
The first thing to do for initial market testing is to put up 3D mock-up of test product on our herbalpapaya.com website (only, NOT on Amazon) , and provide some awareness/poll our customers. The goal of this is to gauge initial demand for the product through actual purchases. Steps for this include:
- Create a quick 3D mock up for the product using these steps:
- Determine product name, colors, logo, brief creative concept and text for the label of the product.
- Hire a (package/label designer) graphics designer on upwork or fiverr to design the label/packaging and deliver both 2D package design file and a 3D mock up of concept. This label does not have to be accurate. you can use placeholder texts, and placeholder UPC code (e.g. TEST-GRAVIOLA-FRUIT). Ensure to obtain the original design files (illustrator/photoshop from designer).
- Create product page for this product on Shopify/herbalpapaya.com website using 3D mockup image. Research similar products online and create/cull a product description, determine pricing and case quantity with your supervisor if needed.
- Work with marketing team to create some awareness of this product (upcoming) such as including in newsletter, sharing on social media and creating a banner for the website.
- Inform the customer service team of this test, especially to expect questions from customers, and process refunds for orders made.
- Review the Test Product Log created by customer service of how many orders are received over a given period of time, say 2 - 3 months in order to evaluate demand.
TO BE OR NOT TO BE - PULL THE TRIGGER??
See how many pre-orders we receive in 30 days
A. Add product to our Product Test Log. Customer service should begin logging every order/customer that makes a purchase of this product, as well as their contact
B. Calculate number of orders required to receive profit on investment.
C. Once that number is reached on a monthly basis, we know there is a big enough market for our product.
- NO - Not To Be: Not enough demand for this product to make business sense? Then move this project to archived state.
- YES - To Be: Once it is decided that demand is sufficient to proceed:
Assign a real UPC code to the product and case quantity if needed: First check to see if we have unused UPC codes by looking inside our Product Development folder in Google Drive
Purchase UPC codes at http://www.singleupc.com/. All labels should include a unique UPC code and Herbal Papaya QR code. Case quantity should also have a unique UPC code.
- Final package design and review: Review and edit the original package design created during test phase and make changes to ingredients and certifications as necessary. You need to edit the original design files in illustrator/photoshop or hire a graphics designer to make these edits. (They should be very minor)
- Ensure package meets FDA label requirements here Label Design Guidelines. Pls read this document thoroughly to ensure compliance.
- Send final package design to our attorney to review and approve or comment.
- Refine product formulation, if required. How to Create a new formula
- Update accounting and inventory records:
- Supervise the end of month Inventory reports and send to accounting.
- Create correct listing of inventory item in warehouse (EFS)
- Inform Book keeper to create corresponding listing in Quickbooks and sync with teapplix.
Review inventory counts and uploading reports for accounting from EFS
- Order Product from co-packer: Depending on product and process,
- select package vendor, negotiate terms/quote, provide them with a PO working with book keeper and send the final package design (illustrator) file to printer or PDF file to co-packer.
- Ensure NDA is signed and all due documentation processed.
- Get Freight quote to ship finished products to our warehouse.,
- Create a new product listing in EFS, and alert them of incoming new shipment.
Once product arrives in warehouse and Q/C steps completed and passed:
- Create updated product page:
- Perform quallity control steps.
On herbalpapaya.com with correct images, updated UPC code, accurate facts, usage and description, nutritional panel, etc.
- Create product pages and advertising campaigns on appropriate amazon channels.
Aggressively Promote and Advertise product, in collaboration with marketing department.
- Send email to all customers that ordered product previously to let them know product is now available and offer 10-15% discount.
C. Other Important Processes
1. Product Research Formulation and Conceptualization
- Determine product ingredient list if needed.
- Experiment with various product formulations in our homes or offices to get drafts of ingredients. Purchase test quantity of raws and similar products in stores or online or cookbooks to compare ingredients, quality, etc.
- Connect with our co-packer to create sample products based on our formulation so we can taste/feel/smell and approve.
- Research and Google vendors using words such as "contract manufacturer", "private label" "wholesale supplier" etc for the raw material and the manufacturing process we need.
- As you build the product, add potential supplier information and notes HERE to stay organized.
- Suppliers of our raw materials will require Spec Sheets for each of our raw materials found here:
- Contact vendors to find out what they can provide and verbally confirm that they meet our quality (organic or minimum of GMO-free) and can provide the materials or raws we seek.
- Ask about minimum quantity we are required to order or manufacture.
- Obtain quote for the product.
- Ask about certifications available (organic, gmo-free for product; cGMP, ISO9001, etc for manufacturing facilities).
- Request product certificates of Analysis be emailed to us.
- Request samples to be mailed to us. Only offer our Fedex Account number (288210799) to vendors if asked, for use in shipping us samples.
- Once Samples arrive, determine if it would work for our needs.
- If this works, Sign NDA with vendor prior to providing them with our formulation or ingredient list or exposing valuable information to them. Template for NDA is found here. Edit this document, save it as a (signed) PDF and mail it to the other party to sign and return.
- When NDA is returned, save it in this folder here.
- Order the raw materials and get ready to bring in the product
- Determine how much quantity of each component is needed for the product or the build. E.g. How much of the raw material, how much in a package, how much labels, packaging, etc.
- Be sure to provide book keeper with the UPC codes for the new products to set up inventory correctly.
- Send all ordered materials to the co-packer, and let co-packer know to expect the order. Send to Address line 1 “Co Packer Name”: Address line 2: “Herbal Papaya Inventory” Order packaging and labels and send all to co-packer