Pharma giant significantly reduces risk for packaging-related product recalls with WebCenter

In need of a single platform to manage artwork across several business units and geographies, the pharmaceutical multinational chose Esko WebCenter as its main artwork management system (AMS).


Company size
99,300 employees
at 87 manufacturing sites
in 150 countries

& health care

Group turnover


The customer

A clear strategy for growth

This leading healthcare corporation researches, develops and manufactures innovative pharmaceutical medicines, vaccines and consumer healthcare products.

The science-led company has a significant global presence with commercial operations in more than 150 countries, a network of 87 manufacturing sites, and large R&D centers in the UK, USA, Belgium and China.

To improve packaging quality and reduce recalls – by reducing complexity, increasing efficiency and freeing up resources – is what made this pharmaceutical concern look for an end-to-end solution.

The challenge

The business impact of costly product recalls

Recalls caused by issues with artwork and packaging are an ongoing problem for many consumer and pharmaceutical companies. Problems can come from a number of areas: non-standardized bills of material, translation mistakes, typos and poor proofreading, expired digital assets, poor printing quality, third-party artwork suppliers and printing shops.

Consumer and pharma companies must also deal with a very strict regulatory environment. According to the FDA at least 65% of packaging and labeling-related recalls are related to artwork and content management errors. The cost of artwork-related recalls for an average multinational pharma company can amount to several million dollars a year.

Even without a recall, the time wasted with unclear briefs, missed annotations and artwork problems can lead to longer time to market or non-compliance fines, also adding pressure to profit margins.

At least 65% of packaging and labeling-related recalls are related to artwork and content management errors.

The solution

Standardized and simplified processes and data

Managing the unwieldy packaging process holistically is therefore essential to achieving profitability. If tackled the right way, it can even save costs and provide a process that can be leveraged across other areas of the business.

The company decided to embark on a transformation journey to enable a single platform to manage artwork across several business units and geographies. After a careful selection process, the company chose Esko WebCenter as its main AMS, mostly due to features that aligned with the company's strategy, as well as ease of use.

Esko WebCenter addresses the pain points through process standardization, data harmonization, and tool automation.

Managing digital assets holistically is essential to ensure compliance with regulatory requirements and avoid costly product recalls.

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The benefits

Achieve ‘first time right’ KPI

With the company wide platform solution in place, the global pharma giant quickly realized a faster time to market, an enhanced brand image and a stronger market position.

  • Lower-cost recalls through a better understanding of the root cause of quality issues, ensuring the same problem does not occur again.

  • Improved regulatory compliance through a pre-validated source of package and artwork data.

  • Improved processes helping the company to achieve its ‘right first time’ KPI.

  • Reduced artwork turnaround time enabling the company to launch products faster.

  • Greater control of artwork management through improved approval and revision tracking processes.

  • Lower costs for artwork changes as the company can now change as much artwork as required within a single process step.

  • Scalability to include future new entities from M&A in the process.
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