Revamping to handle small items


Companies operating with manual handling systems for large quantities of small items can now overhaul with time and cost efficiency with ICA

Revamping to handle small items
Revamping to handle small items

June 10, 2011

Companies operating with manual handling systems for large quantities of small items can now overhaul with time and cost efficiency with ICA.

Materials handling specialist Industrial Conveying Australia (ICA) says it now has the capability to design and produce solutions.

ICA Managing Director Don Erskine says the solution aims to allow companies to modernise processes without going through a costly and challenging relocation.

"Product importers, in particular, handle huge quantities of stock manually because materials handling systems are outdated," Erskine says.

"ICA designers and engineers handle tricky tasks in what are often regarded as a fairly unique set of circumstances."

As an example, Erskine points to materials handling solutions which involve plants with processing systems for one, two or a few different items en masse.

"Some businesses not only handle a huge number of items, but also identify thousands of stock keeping units (SKUs) which give us a greater logistics challenge," he says.

"In some cases where we were called in for consultation, every single item was being handled six times before it was ready for dispatch under the existing set-up.

"This type of multi handling always costs the operator a lot of money and keeps efficiency very low, so a complete revamp is expected to turn an operation from a low efficiency sorting plant into a high efficiency operation."

Erskine says a common challenge arises if the client wants to remain at the existing location, so the project itself has to be completed as quickly as possible with minimum interruption to business.

"When dealing with a limited floor space, ICA is able to configure the new set-up to provide even more space than was previously used by mounting all the materials handling system in the ceiling space and obviating the need to build a new factory," Erskine says.

"This greatly reduces the level of equipment occupying floor space which makes a plant far more spacious and dramatically reduces the amount of obstacles on the floor to ensure it is then a much safer environment for employees."

Ideally, the client gains a system to remain in the same location without any disruption whatsoever.

"Overall, a solution uses a combination of conveyor systems, carousel sorting technology, labelling and RFID technology," Erskine says.

"Like most of our materials handling projects, this type of solution is an Industrial Conveying concept from start to finish."

"Our engineers are able to work very closely with the company’s management and therefore design, commission and complete the job as a turnkey in very quick time."

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