If you are looking at ways to increase your throughput, have you considered the impact that packaging can have in speeding up your operation?
If not, it’s time to look at your packing times – are you being hindered by laborious packing processes or complex packaging that requires assembly? Is your packing area primed to support speedy packing? Are you missing opportunities for automated packaging application?
Here are 5 quick tips to help speed up your packing times and get that product out of the door more quickly.
Is your packaging too complicated?
If you are spending too much time assembling your packaging then it’s time to look for an alternative. Complex die-cut boxes can be challenging to even the most highly trained packer – is there an opportunity to simplify?
There are many carton designs which can help speed up assembly time, a good example of this is the crash-lock base box. It “pops” into shape quickly, allowing you to get started on filling the pack instantly. It’s not a solution that can replace all packs, just a good example of the kind of packaging design that can help speed up your process.
If you are unable to redesign the pack, perhaps consider getting the box delivered ready assembled. This may cost a little more initially, but when weighed up against the labour costs in assembling the packs, it may prove to be a cheaper option. If you are using large quantities of the packs there could be an opportunity to arrange a daily delivery, to save space when storing bulky packaging.
Are you spending too much time taping?
If you spend a lot of time taping boxes, there are a few options to help rectify this.
Again, the good old crash-lock base box negates the need for taping the base of the pack or, a switch to a self-seal box or wrap also removes the need to apply tape.
The introduction of gummed paper tape can also reduce taping time of cartons – as it forms a strong bond with corrugate it removes the need to H-tape boxes.
Does the product need to ship in a carton? Can smaller items switch to a mailer? Padded mailers remove the need for tape and the need to add protective cushioning or void fill, so it’s a double win.
By looking at the amount of tape you use there is potential to reduce packing time and the amount of tape you physically use – reducing packaging material use and cost.
Is your void fill holding you back?
There are lots of void fill and cushioning materials out there, is there an opportunity to switch to a system that dispenses to the pack more quickly but provides the same (or higher) level of protection? Void Fill dispensers not only speed up packing, they can also be programmed to fill packs with set lengths of material, ensuring that the right amount is used every time – reducing the amount of packaging waste you produce.
Maybe there is potential to pack the product without any void fill? Korrvu packs, for example, have in-built protection that can hold your products in place during transit, removing the need for additional packaging material.
How organised is your packing area?
Do your packers have everything to hand, or are they zig-zagging through the work space to get everything they need? Having an organised packaging bench or work station can make a big positive impact on packing times.
Using longer rolls of packaging material can also ensure that fewer roll changes are required, reducing the amount of stock maintenance in the packing area. Hoppers containing sensors can also ensure that void fill stock is automatically dispensed to maintain a consistent flow of material for packing.
Is automation an option?
There are many levels of packaging automation – from small solutions like tape dispensers and semi-automated strapping machines, right through to box erectors, stretch wrap machines and full-on auto boxing and bagging machines. There is an entry level for any business looking to speed up their processes.
Automated packaging application also uses less material, as a consistent amount of packaging is applied each time. This typically reduces material costs and the volume of waste packaging.
If you would like to find out more about speeding up your packing operation, our team of packaging experts are on hand to offer advice. Why not contact us today to find out how we can help: