Every business wants to improve productivity and reduce costs wherever they can. For those involved in storing and transporting goods, using robotics to automate the packaging process can help them do both.
How robotics work
When it comes to industrial packaging, robotics can complete repetitive, unskilled, tasks including picking, packing and placing products onto pallets. These tasks are vital to the production line, but don’t need to be carried out by workers, who can be freed up to carry out tasks requiring a higher level of skills and to focus on the quality of goods being produced.
The benefits of robotics
Using robots in your warehouse has a lot of benefits, including:
– flexibility: robots are programmed, not trained, which means you can quickly make updates and change the tasks they are able to carry out, unlike employees who may need to be sent on a training course.
– accuracy: robots are designed with sensors that ensure they can pick, place and pack products accurately across a range of containers including bulk bags (also known as FIBCs).
– consistency: robots don’t speed up and don’t slow down, but work at the rate set for them, meaning you have a clear idea of how long it will take you to get products ready for shipping and how many staff you will need on the warehouse floor, making your operation leaner and more efficient.
– Safety: robots are able to carry out repetitive tasks without getting tired or distracted, meaning that there is less risk of accident or injuries to employees including those related to handling and lifting, the most common form of workplace injury.
Using robots in your business
When it comes to industrial packaging, you can use robots in a number of ways, including:
– picking and placing products in containers, including FIBCs, and on pallets.
– delicate work such as packing and unpacking baked goods, eggs and glassware without risk of damage to your products.
– moving goods onto pallets and moving pallets within your warehouse or onto delivery vehicles.
The downsides of robotics
As much as robotics can help your business, it’s important to remember they aren’t the answer to everything and there are some downsides. This is especially true if you try to do too much through automation as, while technology is making huge advances in the area of robotics, it is not perfect. It’s important, therefore, to make sure that robots can be programmed to carry out the tasks you need them to do effectively and efficiently.
You also need to consider the costs. Investment in robotics can mean a significant outlay in the beginning and, while you will probably get this back through increased productivity, you need to understand how long this will take and if it makes sense for your business.
For all the potential downsides, however, you still need to consider using robots in your business in the long term in order to remain competitive. So, even if you aren’t ready to invest just yet, it might be worth starting to look at what systems are available, how much they cost, and just what they can do to help you streamline your business processes.