Structural packaging designers work to develop and improve packaging for consumer products and often focus on developing durable, cost-efficient, and easy-to-produce structures for packaging. These designers may work either for companies which produce consumer products or consulting firms which create products according to clients' needs. Packaging may involve plastic wrapping, cardboard boxes, and protective shipping materials, among other materials, and these designers will conduct regular tests on products to determine where improvements or replacements should be made. The job may also involve developing packaging that is not only efficient, but environmentally friendly.
Structural packaging needs to keep up with the latest developments in the field in order to create packaging with the best technology available. It is also important for these designers to analyze what competitors are developing in order to improve their own products. Knowledge of packaging techniques using automated systems is essential in order to develop feasible designs, and these designers must make sure that the packaging and the process to create it adhere to all industry regulations, company policies, and local and national laws.
The job requires an abundance of troubleshooting using both the computer and prototypes, so patience and attention to detail are important for the position. Advanced computer skills including CAD are necessary to adequately design products, as well. A minimum of a bachelor’s degree in packaging design or a similar technical field is commonly required.
Structural Packaging Designer Tasks
Identify cost and marketing parameters to track and report on.
Test shipping designs and display cases, using knowledge of crush strength and equipment.
Design to improve both shipping ease and visual appeal of packaging.
Work with customers to identify packaging needs and explain constraints.