Automated packaging machinery can do wonders for a business, but many business owners find it difficult to pinpoint the right time to move from manual packaging and upgrade to automation.
Manual packaging systems are cheaper to set up than systems that rely on automated packaging machinery, though the latter are cheaper to run once the initial investment has been made. Manual packaging systems are generally preferred for smaller businesses, especially those that experience erratic demand. This in itself can be a problem, though, since seasonal issues can impact negatively, for instance at certain times of the year when orders increase exponentially. A business using manual labor for packing will often be forced to hire casuals during the season to cope with this. And if they are not committed, and can’t meet the needs of production, shipping targets won’t be met and the business can suffer.
Certainly, surges and spikes in business that can be predicted should be factored into the assessment of whether to upgrade to automated packaging machinery or not. This is particularly important when business owners know automated packaging machinery and other automated equipment will not be fully utilized all year round.
Important Considerations Before Upgrading to Automated Packaging Machinery
Automation is an excellent way to grow many businesses, particularly those that offer pre-determined delivery times and same-day shipping.
So how do you make the right decisions?
The first thing to consider is how many packages per minute (PPM) need to be packed every working day. Then you need to estimate current labor costs versus what an automated system will cost. But it cannot be a direct comparison in terms of cost; rather the ROI that will emerge over time. But the PPM figure will enable you to work out what kind of saving automation will deliver in terms of labor costs. Of course, automation isn’t going to delete labor costs altogether. Labor will still be required for various functions, and these must be factored into the equation.
It is important to take all the other costs into account too, including packaging materials that would be used for both manual and automated packing. Branding might be an issue since it could be more difficult to brand those products that are packed using automated packaging. If goods are irregular shapes this might also affect cost. And of course, inventory control, warehousing, and transportation and shipping costs must also be taken into account.
Another element to consider is whether the products to be packaged are manufactured, accumulated, and then packaged en masse, or whether they are packaged progressively as the manufacturing process finishes.
How Can Technik Packaging Machinery Help You?
Technik has the experience and expertise to help you decide whether it’s a good idea to upgrade your operation from a manual system or whether to introduce automated packaging machinery either now or sometime in the future. Our experts are on hand to design a packaging system that will streamline your business operations and improve efficiency. So if you are serious about increasing profit margins we can help you do this, at the same time as helping you reduce costs for customers.
Call us now so we can discuss your needs as soon as possible. We can help you set timelines and ensure you improve output, and maximize efficiency as soon as possible.