How to Maximize Productivity With Your Next Conveyor
Looking to purchase a conveyor system? How and what you specify could be the difference between increased productivity (translation-raise for you) or one big headache. Here are key items to consider.
The first thing to consider is how the conveyor system will work in your operation. Will it be permanently located at your distribution center, or is conveyor portability important? What are the dimensions of the product(s)? Are the items heavy, light, rigid or flexible? Each determines what type of conveying system works best for the application.
Anticipating Growth or Other Changes
There is a tendency to think in terms of present conveying needs or at most a year or two down the road. However, most situations require a long-term approach, both in terms of design and growth. Modular components allow for a custom configuration of the conveyor system but also provide flexibility should reconfiguring occur due to growth or an improved workflow. This capability could be the difference between adding a few components and replacing your conveyor system.
Reliability and Ease of Maintenance
Time is money and your company is losing it, should your conveyor system suffer from unplanned downtime due to mechanical failure or unscheduled maintenance. Everyone likes having the latest equipment. However, new designs seldom are issue-free in the first production year. Sometimes it is better invest in products with a good track record.
Another item to consider is the ability to service the conveyor. Regardless of reliability, conveyors endure a certain level of use/abuse that will require maintenance. Two key items to investigate are easy access to parts and replacement parts availability when required. Hard-to-get parts or parts difficult to install all add to downtime your company cannot afford.
Check out the ergonomics of the conveyor as it relates to the workforce. Recent studies reveal an important connection between ergonomics and productivity. An ergonomically designed conveying system improves productivity and can reduce the number of workman’s comp claims.
Applying these helpful tips will go a long way to ensuring the successful implementation of your new conveyor system. However, there is one last suggestion. Be sure to work with an experienced conveyor systems integrator. Their experience and perspective is an invaluable resource.