Manufacturing today has changed and is far different from what it was ten years ago. For one thing, it’s not just about producing goods or services; it’s about how efficiently these processes get done. The world is changing rapidly, and consumers expect more from companies. Beyond price points and eco-friendly sustainability, they want the convenience of seamless delivery (sometimes within the same 24-hour period).

The high cost of these types of innovation is the challenge that many manufacturers are facing.  CEOs are quite aware of the need to adapt, face new challenges, and even embrace new technologies.

What Makes A Smart Factory?

“Smart” is a common phrase in many manufacturing industries these days. But, what is a smart factory, and what are the insights this phraseology provides? A Smart Factory is a facility that makes use of integrated technologies to monitor and analyze data and ensure high productivity. A smart factory is a connected factory.

The systems that make up modern smart factory designs include:

  • Mobile handling systems 
  • Driverless vehicles 
  • Work cells 
  • Automated storage and retrieval systems 
  • Industrial robotics

Aside from creating more easily accessible goods (that people want according to clear data), a factory that can bring products closer to the customer. The result is lower shipping cost, which benefits everyone. Streamlined processes in smaller, more strategically located factories helps get products out the door and delivered more simply. What does that look like inside of the plant? Smart handling is an essential ingredient. 

Getting the Right Containers for Smart Handling Solutions

With the modern growth of manufacturing, the requirement for smart handling solutions becomes more and more critical. Owing to many experiments and experiences, a wide variety of smart handling solutions have been researched and developed. They are suitable for all products involved in manufacturing and assembly processes. But when it comes to choosing small containers for smart handling solutions, you may get confused. Some considerations for containers used in smart handling solutions include:

  • Container Options: Containers are a very important thing in smart factories. Containers bring in resources and take out products, so the flow of containers will determine how fast a factory can complete its production cycle. If you want your factory to run faster, you need more containers.
  • Container Sizes: Smart factories come in all shapes and sizes. They can produce everything from high-tech electronics to food products to automobile parts. The size of the container you need is determined by the amount of product you have to ship, the frequency of shipment, and the destination. 
  • Container Materials: When it comes to containers in factories, they can be made out of materials, such as metal, plastic, wood, and paper. Today, operations need to be more environmentally cautious, and containers that are made out of reusable plastics provide a sustainable solution. 
  • Container Versatility: Scalable and adaptable, the Smart Handling concept is an innovative solution that fits any industry. These containers can store, transport, process, and manage vast amounts of materials with maximum efficiency. These systems can be adapted to the needs of any industry or customer. 

These are considerations that operations managers should take into account when looking for containers for their smart factories and smart handling. 

Smart Handling and Factory Automation

Smart handling is a great way to enhance the process of handling materials in the factory. It is a new technology that helps to reduce the risk of injuries and improve efficiency in the operation of some processes. The technology helps in reducing costs, improving productivity, and ensuring sustainable development. 

On the other hand, Factory Automation is one of the most effective ways to improve the overall efficiency, quality, and performance of industrial processes. It involves the use of electronics, software, and machinery to control the production processes in an automated manner. This technology helps a factory enhance its product quality, reduce energy consumption, lower costs, increase efficiency, and gain a significant competitive edge over its competitors.

The Future of Smart Factories 

Factories of the future will be smart, and they will be able to produce volumes at lower cost, higher quality, and with more efficient energy use. These smart factories will be as much about intelligence as it is about automation, and they will need to be managed intelligently.

New technologies are emerging to improve the way manufacturers handle and process materials, products, information, and energy. These technologies are collectively known as Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) technologies. They include smart sensors that can monitor machines, robotic devices designed to work alongside humans, the ability to remotely control equipment, and the ability to collect data from operations and use it to make decisions.

To start implementing the right smart factory solutions, contact the experts at Flexcon,  creators of postal totes, to get a quote on your optimized, end-to-end container and smart handling solution.