A flexible solution for increasing production and providing optimal service standards is provided by industrial automation, which includes automated handling systems.
It is possible to measure industrial facility productivity using several key performance indicators (KPI). Some of these main performance indexes are the enhanced power efficiency ratio, the time a machine is used, and the amount of work it does. In addition, numerous KPIs can be improved by using automated materials handling solutions, as the instances below show.
5 ways to increase productivity and efficiency
Industry 4.0 business practices are being used increasingly, which shows that the industrial sector continues to see the benefits of automating and improving industrial processes. For example, the following are some ways in which automated material handling systems might boost productivity:
1. increased machine performance
There is no vacuum in which shop floor machinery operates. The machine is supplied with the necessary tool heads, resources, and data through a collection of connected processes. Poor material handling hinders the production process and decreases the delivery rate of materials to workspaces due to shorter machine utilisation times.
It is necessary to automate material handling systems to minimise delays caused by inefficient flow or handling of materials. When supplies and tools are delivered to the relevant workstations, machinery runs smoothly, and workers have the necessary tools to make parts.
2. Lower operational expenses
Goods handling equipment and the power used to transport materials around a factory floor are included in the overall cost of production and storage. Even though manual carts consume very little electricity, the extra traffic on the factory floor might result in accidents or delivery problems, which raises the overall production cost. Forklifts also cause the majority of factory floor safety events. Therefore, a significant amount of energy is also consumed by them.
3. Helping with Lean manufacturing projects
The goal of lean production is to decrease waste at all stages of production in order to increase productivity. Therefore, automating material handling through the use of industrial automation gives better results in terms of material handling efficiency. Automated handling systems’ capability to fully stick to operating schedules and guarantee materials come on time is one such.
4. Improved scalability
Scalability is one of the key benefits of automated handling systems for manufacturers. Material handling systems must be able to grow with the company’s production capability as it expands. As a result, adding more AGVs or other automated material handling equipment to a shop floor is far easier than adding more traditional material handling systems.
5. Lower effects of labour shortages
Due to the retirement of older workers, the manufacturing sector is currently in a transitional period. As a result, a new generation of workers who are required to take over for older employees is not interested in pursuing careers in the business. Because of this, there has been a significant decrease in factory productivity.
Using industrial automation, it is possible to mitigate the effects of an ageing workforce and worker shortages. For example, material handling operations can be automated, reducing the number of people needed and increasing the efficiency of those already on-site. As a result, workers will have more time to do other critical duties on the production floor.