How to upgrade your packaging line to meet short term demand
As manufacturers of all sizes begin to overcome some of the biggest challenges of operating safely during a pandemic, many are diversifying and exploring short term opportunities. With short term contracts, however, comes a set of new challenges, such as accelerating output over a different range of projects or streamlining distribution for example.
The packaging world has been moving towards automation for some time and the adoption of semi-automatic packaging machines has grown significantly during the pandemic. This has been driven by the need for social distancing on the shop floor and to help meet growing demand across a wide range of sectors. But choosing where to invest has been tough for many manufacturers. When dealing with what may be short-term demand, what is the best way forward?
Further reading: Can your packaging machines deliver the flexibility you really need?
It’s all in the planning
As builders of packaging machines for more than 100 years, Jacob White understands that there are additional pressures faced by businesses during times of crisis. We know about raw materials shortages and blocked supply chains, about the economic fluctuations and the highs and lows of sudden sharp rises in short term demand.
Currently, short term demand is high, and the opportunities are there for many sectors. This has encouraged many businesses to diversify and break new ground. However, there are also risks involved in an uncertain world and many are still hesitant to make major decisions.
Planning is key to any process when you’re weighing up the pros and cons of investment in infrastructure or machinery, whether you are looking ahead or thinking of the short term. Add to the mix an uncertain future, potential economic downturn and sector viability and things can get complicated very quickly. However, working carefully through your operational and packaging processes to determine where improvements could be made is a good place to start – especially in today’s current climate.
Further reading: Repackaging the Packaging Industry
Choosing the right automation technology for your packaging line
Choosing the right technology to automate your packaging line involves pinpointing your exact needs. You may need a machine to speed up packaging operations while your workforce is reduced in the short term or require an end-of-line solution to streamline distribution. Perhaps you have an opportunity to diversify and need consistency but don’t want to invest in multiple machines, or simply want to future-proof your operations for the long term.
Whatever your reasons, choosing the right machine for the job is paramount to ensure your investment pays off.
Further reading: How choosing the right packaging machine can impact your ROI
Buy or hire a packaging machine?
Renting a packaging machine can be an extremely useful and flexible option for small to medium-sized manufacturers looking to take on short term opportunities. It enables a short to medium term increase in demand on the production line and allows manufacturers to keep options open while meeting the challenges head-on. Some companies already do this to cope with seasonal demands.
Packaging machine rental can also support manufacturers when testing new product lines or trying short production runs of multiple products. This can enable vital scalability that is essential for many small to medium-sized operations, especially at the current time.
Hiring over the short term is also a way to test packaging machines before you make a commitment to invest in upgrades to the packaging line. A long term investment in automation can help to future proof your operational capabilities and this is something that a growing number of manufacturers are looking for. Investing long term in hiring a machine may not be the best way to gain a return on your investment, but it can open the possibilities in the short term, providing a testing ground to find the best way forward.
Further reading: Get your packaging line moving again
How Jacob White can help
Jacob White is one of the country’s leading packaging machine rental, sales and service businesses. Established in 1911, we offer unmatched experience and a unique understanding of your business model. We work closely with our clients to determine the best fit for their exact needs. This is backed up with British build quality and global maintenance, parts and service offering to keep you operating seamlessly, whether you buy or hire your machine.
Our machines are designed with size and speed adjustment features that require no parts changeover and little training to operate, enabling the flexibility to test short runs of multiple products with minimal downtime. Suitable for a wide range of industries from food and drinks packaging, pharma and hygiene to automotive parts and everything in between, our packaging machines offer the flexibility and scalability you need during a pandemic and beyond.
Talk to us about our packaging machines and let us help you find the best way to upgrade your operations to meet long- or short-term demand. Whether you are looking to hire or buy your machine, are looking for full automation or an end-of-line case packer, we can help.