5 ½ Ways to Improve Uptime in your Case Coding Operation

Downtime.  It’s the enemy of every packaging production manager.

Downtime equates to missed production targets and lost revenue, especially when your line is expected to run continuously 3 shifts per day.

So how can you increase the uptime of your existing line without buying an entirely new hardware solution?

Here are 5 1/2 ways to make an immediate impact on uptime in your case coding operation.

1. Choose the right equipment for your production environmentUptime-Logo-no-background

Coding can affect your production line’s reliability in a number of ways. The equipment must be industrial enough to handle continuous operation in a wide range of settings. Before purchasing, test the printer on your line to see how it integrates with your production line. Having printers that can be quickly moved between different filling lines gives you more flexibility of operation. And consider what inks you are using in your coder. If you are producing a range of products with different substrates, then inkjet coders would be an optimal fit for reliable print on virtually any packaging material. At Case Printing Solutions, we have printers available to customers who are in the sales evaluation cycle if they prefer a trial unit.

2. Implement bulk ink systems that don’t require regular line stoppage

Line stoppages are frequently associated with changeovers. This is the time it takes to adjust or prepare equipment to handle a different type of product or packaging. Inkjet case coding operations can minimize downtime by implementing a low cost bulk ink system. While there are several alternatives, consider a dual tank system with hot swapping. When bulk supply #1 runs out, the light pole switches from green to yellow and eventually red, indicating it’s time to change out the supply. Meanwhile, the system automatically switches to bulk supply #2 and the line stays up the entire time. These bulk systems help drive the cost of print down as well.

3. Reduce servicing and maintenance

With the aggressive production targets typically found in case coding operations, eliminating unnecessary downtime is essential for increasing profitability and reducing your cost-per-product. Unnecessary downtime usually falls into two main areas: servicing or breakdown. Each of these mean the production line has to be stopped, and can cause lengthy delays to production. Inkjet coding systems typically have long service intervals which reduce downtime on your line, and help you meet your targets of continual operation with a lower overall cost of ownership. When service is required, a quick wipe of the cartridges with a lint free cloth will usually do the trick.

4. Provide machine operators with easy-to-implement SOP’s

Unfortunately, over time, knowledge and specs for proper operations are lost, and case coding print quality suffers. Deploying inkjet in your operation makes a lot of sense because the technology is easy to use. And still, there’s a need to document and implement standard operating procedures to ensure the long-term productivity of your lines. Partnering with the right supplier who can help document your case coding operation can minimize disruptions when labor leaves or changes over.

5.5 Select suppliers with a ‘service first’ mentality

That’s right, this point is so important we valued it 50% higher than the previous four.

Whether you manage a packaging line or are getting ready to outfit one, having suppliers who truly value the customer is critical. Case Printing Solutions is the perfect combination of consultant, supplies expert, and coder guru and we’re available to streamline case coding lines across the country. We do whatever it takes to help our customers over the phone, via email or through webinars, but we really encourage a factory visit to help optimize the current operation’s uptime. If you need an expert coding supplier in your corner, then look no further than Case Printing Solutions.

Case Printing Solutions is the industry expert when it comes to selling, repairing, operating and replenishing case coding systems.  We are packaging and case coding experts. Contact Case Printing Solutions at (541) 754-2273 or visit us at www.caseprintingsolutions.com