Labeling business serves customers, protects workers
UC Goering Center news
Innovative Labeling Solutions took its duty as an essential business seriously.
The Fairfield Township-based company provides digitally-printed labels, shrink sleeves and flexible packaging for consumer-packaged goods such as hand sanitizer, cleaning products, nutritional supplements, food and beverage products and medical supplies.
In early February as the pandemic started garnering attention in the United States, the company realized that it would be a critical part of the supply chain to provide essential products and services.
“We understood that we had a special responsibility on two fronts — to make sure we could protect the health and safety of our employees, while continuing to produce products that would support the essential needs of our country’s people,” said Jay Dollries, Innovative Labeling Solutions’ president and CEO. “We also knew that we would need to forecast changes in market demand for certain products as we realized there could be erratic fluctuations from our normal trends.”
For example, Innovative Labeling Solutions predicted exponential growth in cleaning products, temperature strips, nutritional supplements and hand sanitizer. Since March 1, the company has made more than 18 million sanitizer labels. In 2019, it made just 260,000 labels. Also, since March 1, it has produced more than 75 million forehead thermometers.
The hard work paid off. The company achieved record-breaking sales in March and April. May sales increased 30 percent year over year. But critical products were not the company’s only focus.
“As much as we are committed to serving our clients’ needs, we are even more devoted to the health and well-being of our employees and the safety of our workplace,” Dollries said.
To help protect its workforce, Innovative Labeling Solutions created a COVID-19 taskforce and implemented several measures.
The company was able to transition 75 percent of its front office staff to a full-time remote work environment. It provided masks to every employee, instituted temperature checks and a symptom-screening questionnaire upon entry for all employees as well. All workers were encouraged to stay home if they felt ill and it closed its facility to all visitors except for essential vendors, who were accompanied by an Innovative Labeling Solutions employee at all times.
The company also installed multiple air purifiers and hands-free, foot-operated door pulls throughout its facility. It implemented rigorous cleaning procedures for workstations and shared spaces. It provided hand sanitizer bottles at individual workstations and added hand sanitizer dispensers in high-traffic areas. It closed common areas and limited access to high-touch surfaces, including vending machines.
The company also reached out to the community. It participated in roundtables, sharing best practices. It gave custom printed labels about social distancing to its clients and other businesses in their firms’ brand colors. It donated labels to distilleries who made hand sanitizer.
Dollries credited his company’s success to preparation and taking a team approach.
“We are constantly changing, always improving and have successfully navigated these unchartered times while remaining resilient and growing,” he said.
Featured image at top: President and CEO Jay Dollries of Innovative Labeling Solutions.
Innovative Labeling Solutions is a Goering Center core member, and the Goering Center is sharing this content as part of its Business Courier supplement for the 2020 Family & Private Business Awards. View more of the digital supplement here.
About Innovative Labeling Solutions
Innovative Labeling Solutions, based in Fairfield Township, is a digital print and packaging company that specializes in custom printed labels, shrink sleeves, and flexible packaging. The company began in 1996 through a family partnership.
About the Goering Center for Family & Private Business
Established in 1989, the Goering Center serves more than 400 member companies, making it North America’s largest university-based educational non-profit center for family and private businesses. The Center’s mission is to nurture and educate family and private businesses to drive a vibrant economy. Affiliation with the Carl H. Lindner College of Business at the University of Cincinnati provides access to a vast resource of business programing and expertise. Goering Center members receive real-world insights that enlighten, strengthen and prolong family and private business success. For more information on the Center, participation and membership visit goering.uc.edu.