As more apparel decorating and promotional products companies automate their businesses with shop management software, the subject of KPIs is emerging as shops make use of its integrated reporting functionality. Key performance indicators (KPIs) are a way for companies to measure and evaluate success in achieving critical business objectives – identifying problems in operations and prioritizing areas for improvement. While there are many metrics that can be measured and analyzed, choosing the KPIs that are the most relevant and important for your print shop allows your company to remain focused on those that have the greatest impact on overall success. In this blog, we outline 7 KPIs your decorated apparel, screen printing, and embroidery shop could use to successfully monitor and evaluate key business objectives and targets.  

  1. Misprint, Defect, and Blank Tracking – The type of issue, number, and employee are tracked and benchmarks can be created. This tracking allows for the triggering of instant notifications that initiate urgent stock picks to ensure orders are not delayed due to errors. By establishing these benchmarks and comparing actual data against them, you’re able to determine if alternate suppliers need to be sought if inconsistent vendor quality is a chronic issue or if specific equipment operators need re-training.
  2. Downtime – If production halts for a period of time, the cause for shutdown needs to be determined, as this can have an effect on a print shop’s productivity and profits. The reason and length of downtime are tracked to determine if corrective action should be taken. This metric is helpful in identifying if machines are being used to their capacity, as well as in making decisions regarding the purchase of new equipment.
  3. Trends – An industry-specific business management solution’s analytics and reporting capabilities can assist with the assessment of consumer trends, seasonal demands, and prediction of future behavior patterns by evaluating sales history. If there is a growth in a particular type of decoration or business line, this type of information can be shared across the organization. For example, data indicating an increased sales volume in the DTG printing line can be shared specifically with the sales and marketing departments, enabling them to target messages in that particular aspect of the business.
  4. Order Tracking – Timestamp functionality within an ERP solution records the amount of time spent on each process, updates order statuses, tracks employee incentives (i.e. run rate per hour), and captures errors as they occur. The apparel management workflow from online artwork approval to receipt of blanks to final shipping confirmation provides a detailed level of visibility of the order fulfillment process from start to finish – helping to identify unnecessary steps or areas of improvement that may be adding costs.  
  5. Sales – There are a variety of indicators to help your sales team determine if sales initiatives for your apparel and screen printing company are being met. Tracking sales volume by location, monitoring competitor pricing, managing incoming lead activity, tracking repeat orders, and keeping records of quotes that turn into orders are all metrics that are important in determining success.
  6. Costs – An ERP solution can capture the cost per unit as well as overall costs. Tracking this information aids in decision-making for cost-cutting measures within the production process, as well as pricing decisions for products to improve profit margins.
  7. Meeting Customer Deadlines – No matter the size of your business, meeting the need by expected dates of your customers is a key to success. Tracking this information is essential in making the necessary adjustments in sales, order fulfillment, and shipping processes. Once your shop is achieving brag-worthy results (i.e. a 98% on-time delivery rate), these statistics can be used in sales and marketing materials to highlight company accomplishments. 

KPIs provide an important assessment of the success of apparel decorating and promotional products companies – using real-time data and ERP software functionalities not only measure current performance but help to develop plans to meet future strategic business goals. Impress ERP is developed for the unique needs of decorated apparel, screen printing, and embroidery shops to enable data-driven business decisions with enhanced visibility and one centralized database.  Contact us for a personalized demonstration of how Impress can help you track the KPIs important to you.