Plan Automation Technology Blog

Ways End of Line Automation Reduce Labor and Costs

Posted by PLAN Automation Blog on Tue, Sep 2, 2014 @ 08:09 AM

End of line case packaging automation is
one of the most effective ways majorEnd-of-line packing automation manufacturers worldwide have begun to cut back on unnecessary, frivolous labor and material expenses. These technologies all but eliminate the risk of human error, and optimize materials use in the packaging phase of operations. Beyond end of line automation, stretch wrapping equipment and case forming automation help manufacturers achieve many of the same objectives.

In this blog article, we’ll give a little more insight into how case packaging automation can bring huge labor and cost savings to manufacturers during end of line applications, as well as provide further information into the varying types of end of line automation available.

Automation and Labor Needs

Packaging automation benefits major manufacturing lines most in its streamlining of labor; it takes strenuous, unnecessary labor requirements and replaces them with automated packaging equipment, allowing manufacturers to move their workforce onto more focused and productive tasks.

Having hard-working employees filling boxes at the end of line, while they could be assigned other, more beneficial tasks, is a waste of valuable human resources and adds cost to your finished goods. This potentially reduces your ability to compete against other manufacturers and improve your overall profit margin.

One of manufacturing’s greatest and most sought after resources is time: the allocation of it, the effective use of it and the incredible costs of it, should the wrong systems be in place. With case packaging automation, you can optimize your workforce’s time, and put valuable labor hours to better use in other areas of your operations.

Automation and Financial Gains

Naturally, optimizing your employees’ labor time
will mean great savings for you,Save money using packaging automation as time can be better spend tending to other facets of your production line. Case packing automation takes the tediousness of manual packaging techniques and fully replaces them with a labor-free alternative.

Beyond savings resulting from streamlined labor, automation technologies also generate huge cost cuts in material use and product line overconsumption. In a great majority of applications, automation maximizes material use efficiency, cutting back on inefficient packaging mishaps and completely mitigating the risks of human error.

Your business is only as successful as your brand name is reliable, and your brand is only seen as reliable if your products are consistent and efficiently packaged. Your customers and distributors won’t accept poorly packaged final products or frequent delays in packaging… Packaging automation eliminates these risks.

As high output and low production costs are key to having an efficient manufacturing line, it may not seem justifiable to bring an automated technology into your production mix; the costs may be too high initially, or ROI unpredictable.

Fortunately, as many production managers soon learn, end of line packaging automation technologies can fully return on their investment costs in a mere matter of months, by eliminating wasteful material spending and rerouting your workforce to more productive duties.

Varying Solutions for Varying Industries

Even in some cases, where full end of line automation seems impractical, there are similar solutions, using the same principles at a fraction of the cost, that can semi-automate your production line. These are technologies for situations where full automation just doesn’t make sense, such as operations with speeds below 10 cases per minute, or those that require human interaction or supervision in some capacity.

These options bring packaging automation, and
all of its benefits, to productionEnd-of-line automation lines where such technologies are often considered impractical and unnecessary. Bringing the same material and labor savings as full automation, semi-automatic packing can return on its investment costs in as little as 6 months.

Outside of full-and semi-automation packing options, there are 4 different types of systems on the market today, bringing packaging automation to unique industries and production systems.

For instance, top-load case packing options exist for high-volume, versatile production systems, and are considered the “standard” in packing automation. As a single-cell solution, the toll on efficiency seen with traditional, “module” systems is completely avoided; these solutions are the go-to option in a huge range of industries.

On another note, side-load case packing options are one of the most customizable packaging automation technologies, with capabilities that have many manufacturers choosing these solutions over their packaging systems of old.

Even beyond these two models types, there are additional, more selective packaging automation technologies (bottom-load case packing and drop case packing), which provide the same benefits of automation in industries where top- and side-load systems would simply not work; namely the beverage industry and dairy industry, respectively.

End of line automation is one of the most lucrative ways for manufacturers to see savings both with immediate labor and materials costs, and with greater returns over time. Best of all? The various models, speeds and customizations of today’s packaging automation technologies make them compatible with almost any production operation. To learn more about the benefits of automation, or how automation technology can benefit your production operation immediately, contact us today.

Case & Tray Forming 101 - Plan Automation

Topics: Packaging Automation, Case Packing, End of Line Automation, side load case packing