Man vs. Machine: When is it time to switch to a Strapping Machine?
Hand strapping, while fine for a small number of items or cardboard boxes, can become a very time consuming task when your volume of shipments increase.
At Signet, we understand the struggles that warehouses face when trying to increase efficiency in any process — including strapping. One of the most obvious ways to increase efficiency is by investing in machinery; however, it is always important to consider all of the factors when making that type of purchase.
To help you decide if a strapping machine is right for you, read through our top factors to consider.
A significant factor when considering a machine are the time savings that could be created. Every minute spent manually cutting the strapping, placing it around your goods and sealing the strap with a buckle or seal is time that could be utilised better elsewhere.
Furthermore, hand strapping can also highlight potential issues, such as:
- Inconsistent strapping tension that could lead to your goods moving and getting damaged during transit.
- Unnecessary waste – For example, if an additional 30cm of strapping is being thrown away every time you're strapping cardboard boxes together, the strapping is not being used efficiently. This could also increase costs as you need to order more frequently.
- Higher risk of OH&S injuries – Like most manual labour tasks, there is always a chance of injury from incorrect bending, stretching or using equipment incorrectly etc. Removing some of the manual labour can help reduce the risk of injury.
What are the benefits of using a strapping machine?
One of the most significant benefits machinery can create is the opportunity to use time more effectively. Imagine if your team had an hour to upskill, which could help create efficiencies in other areas of your business, or implement Continuous Improvement measures in other processes to make their workdays run smoother.
Other benefits include:
- Standardised wastage – By standardising the strapping process, waste from over anticipating the amount of strapping required could be reduced. This would also create flow on stock and cost benefits as less strapping would be required to complete the same task.
- Consistent tension – Securely strapping your items or cardboard boxes is key to minimising their chance of damage during transit.
- Reduced costs – Reducing costs by removing the need for additional items, such as buckles or seals, is a great factor to consider when looking at a strapping machine.
- Safer OH&S practices
What are the potential challenges of using machinery?
Now that we have identified the benefits that machinery can create, it is time to consider the potential challenges.
Potential challenges include:
- Lack of space - Machine footprints can range from 750mm in length x 550mm in width to 1180mm in length x 620mm in width. If you only have a small space available, fitting in a machine could be tricky.
- Power outages
If you strap more than 25 items a day, a strapping machine could be the solution you need to increase efficiency, and you could also see savings in as little as 6 months.