Diabetes Research & Wellness Foundation

15,000 two-page personalised colour reply form and four-age generic colour letter with an affixed £1 coin and stamp.

This project was with a charity who were sending out letters with a £1 coin affixed and a reply envelope.

The objective

15,000 two-page personalised colour reply form and four-age generic colour letter folded as a nested set were sent with colour printed outer envelope and mono printed reply enveloped and affixed stamp in a C5 window envelope. Dealing with currency is a first for WDM — we needed to source the coins, consider the physical security, and think about staff training. We had to create a process of affixing the coins to the letter so that they could be removed by the recipient but not fall off during enclosing and also as efficiently as possible while ensuring every coin and stamp is accounted for.

Our solution

We held staff training for the entire business to ensure that no one spoke about the job outside of our building so that we didn’t draw unnecessary attention for storing cash. We also needed to stress the importance of tracing every coin as they moved through each process of the job and explain how we would do this. We spoke to the bank, post office, and mint as possible suppliers of the coins, deciding to go with the bank. Four staff members collected the currency to ensure security and acquired a large fire-proof safe to store the cash until it was needed.

We don’t have a machine capable of affixing coins to a letter, so we made the job as fast as possible by making a template out of plywood and cut channels which were the width of a £1 coin. We filled the channels with coins and ran a tape applicator gun down each channel, then separated the coins and affixed them to the letters by hand, which was far quicker than using glue dots. We tested three different types of tape to find one that was just strong enough to hold the coin securely and still allow it to be removed from the letter by the recipient.

We created a bespoke check sheet for this job and allocated batches of 500 coins and letters to staff members to affix. They were required to sign the check sheets and then label the trays to correspond to the sheet — the same process was completed for affixing the stamps to the return envelopes. The batches were then transferred to the enclosing lines where they were folded into envelopes and verified using a weigh checking station that would stop the machine if the pack weight was incorrect, identifying a missing coin or stamp.

The outcome

This unusual and challenging job was completed safely and securely a day early and with every single coin and stamp accounted for.

15,000

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