production line architecture and equipment

Production lines are an important part of manufacturing. Designed to increase speed and efficiency, and perform limited tasks, they and the equipment in them can help to produce goods much faster than traditional manufacturing methods. Since the business is putting together the product in the same order at the same speed and using the same technicians, there’s much less chance of variation in quality.

Below is a look at production lines and their importance, production line equipment, different types of production manufacturing and more. We start by defining what a production line is.

what is a production line?

A production line, simply, is a line of workers, machines or equipment in a factory or manufacturing facility that passes work from one workstation to the next until the manufacture of the product is complete. In other words, it’s almost as literal as the term suggests. You might also hear people refer to a production line as an ‘assembly line’, but there are some slight differences.

The difference between a production line and an assembly line

It’s easy to confuse production lines and assembly lines because the two are so similar; however, they do differ slightly.

A production line is a configuration that consists of a set of processing steps. At each step, the manufacturer performs an operation or task that moves the product closer to becoming a finished product. ‘Production line’ is a broader term that can include manufacturing processes which don’t include parts. For instance, an operator of a factory could use a production line for food processing and packaging.

An assembly line is slightly more specific. It’s a type of production line that creates an assembly of parts or components. At each stage of the process, the manufacturer adds parts or components. The product then becomes closer to being fully assembled.

Why is a production line important?

The arrival of the production line had a deep impact on industrial business. Anyone who didn’t adopt production lines soon found themselves having to close. Production lines saved businesses time and money when they arrived.

In the US, production lines became crucial to the war effort during World War II, a time in history that made mass production all the more important. The efficiency that mass production provided enabled US businesses to switch from making consumer goods to armaments quickly. They could also manufacture the armaments swiftly.

One of the biggest pioneers was, of course, the late Henry Ford. He believed assembly lines improved conditions for employees because the lines reduced the amount of bending and heavy lifting necessary. He also removed the need for special training.

Not only businesses benefited from Ford’s use of an assembly line; consumers did as well. The mass production sped up the process of building cars, lowering the cost of buying a new car. As a result, cars became more accessible.

How does a production line operate?

The operation of a production line is relatively straightforward. The manufacturer organises the line so that the product moves along it sequentially, stopping at workstations or centres where work is performed on the product before it continues along the line. The manufacturer may use a conveyor or forklift truck to move the items(s), or move them manually to the next station.

The production line could also be a team of human-operated positions organised in line with the set of operations that make up a technological process. The number of positions will depend upon the requirements and technical specifications of the product. Each product must go through every stage of the process, within a specific time, and all of the employees must perform the actions their position in the process entails. These activities constitute the production cycle. The end result of a production line is the result of processing, handling, packaging, transportation and more.

Production line equipment planning and design

When planning and design a production, you must consider five main components: the individual workstation, the material handling, the machine-operator interface, tools and maintenance. Below we look at each, plus provide some tips and other things to contemplate in the planning stages.

The individual workstation

A workstation is the interface point between a worker and the product, and can be static or stationary at a single workbench or machine, or flexible on a moving line.

You must understand the optimal interface for the product in relation to the person doing the work. This is your starting point for setting up your production line, and you should understand the optimal interface at each stage of the production process because it will determine the design of a lot of the equipment you need for your line. The workers must be able to position themselves in a productive position for the work, to see and to access the product easily.

Material handling stations

Whether on a separate station or on a moving line, workers will have to move materials to stations and from them. This could be via:

  • separate machines or benches to which forklift trucks carry batches of materials or the to which materials are manually transferred, connecting these benches and machines;
  • a single line, with single piece flow that connects the workstations e.g. a conveyor or sliding belt.

Rather than addressing a single location, it’s better to think of material handling as a whole system throughout the manufacturing facility. This makes it easier to identify unnecessary steps and incompatible handling methods.

A lot of places will use machines to handle materials, but there will also be gaps in predictable locations such as the final step of delivering the items to the point of use. Here, manual handling enters the picture, and often there’s a need to lift items to the right height or orient them properly for use. The results? Less efficiency, and the risk of back injuries and other injuries.

The machine-operator interface

A manually operated machine is a special type of workstation, and requires particular attention because the size and the function of a machine can create barriers to achieving the best human-machine interface.

Machines tend to have specific points of operation into which the worker must place materials and to which they must move them. This can make a machine difficult to integrate fully into the production line. Smaller machines are easier to integrate completely into the line, whereas larger ones are a lot harder to.

Machine changeovers also raise issues. The components the manufacturer has to switch out are heavy. They must set the components precisely within specific mechanisms of the machine. This is much in contrast to manual handling, which is more flexible.

Maintenance

When manufacturers are designing their equipment or planning their production lines, often they don’t pay enough consideration to maintenance. This maintenance could be in the form of repairs, tune-ups or cleaning, but either way, many times the consideration and planning is lacking. Ideally, the manufacturer should provide clearance and access for maintenance, and equipment should possess features that make it as easy to take care of the equipment as possible.

Tools

You should have the right tools for the right job; knowing which tools is more complicated, though. Other issues to consider are supports and holders for tools, and also storage for them at their point of use.

Things to consider when planning and designing a production line

Above, we’ve had a look at the components of the production line. Here are some further things to contemplate when planning your production line:

Space and location

You have to think about all the workers and machinery or other equipment you’ll have to fit into your space. You must be able to map out the process(es) and machinery, and allow employees to be able to move around the workplace comfortably without disrupting any production lines or processes already in place. It’s essential.

It’s not just a question of space, however; choosing a suitable location is just as important. Shipping and transport costs can become a major issue if your customers are far away or if it’s difficult for them to reach your manufacturing premises.

Existing production schedules

If you’re already operating a production line, you must be able to fit the new line into current schedules. Machinery downtime, worker availability and product quality are all elements the new production line could affect. Evaluate schedules and make sure the production line won’t disturb existing lines that are already meeting your customers’ needs.

Complying with regulations

Obviously, products must meet certain standards. The production line must take into account the type of product you’ll be manufacturing on the line. Can you comply with regulations but still maintain the product quality and keep your costs low?

Budget

Budget is hugely important. When planning your production line, you have to think about the operational costs, machinery maintenance, product waste management and other expenses. Will your production line reward the investment with worthwhile, sustainable profits?

Different types of production line equipment

You’ll find many different types of production line equipment today. A lot is automated or requires almost nothing more than programming a computer numerical control (CNC) machine.

Equipment you mind find on a production line includes printed circuit board (PCBs) assembly machines, CNC machinery, lathes and extrusion devices The manufacturer must control and calibrate every piece of machinery to make the necessary products correctly for distribution. If they don’t take good care of the machinery, the result will be malfunctioning and incorrectly finished goods.

Printed circuit boards

The internal structure of mobile phones and a lot of other electronic devices contain some kind of PCB. This places many manufacturing facilities under the obligation to have production line capabilities to create PCBs from raw materials. A solder paste machine must apply the board’s circuit pathways, and another device must pick and place electronic components onto these new solder pads. The PCB must enter the reflow oven to melt the solder with the components. The board then undergoes rigorous testing with an optical bond testing machine.

CNC machinery

CNC production line equipment manufactures mechanical parts for a wide variety of items. Vehicle axles and bike frames are two typical examples. The operator uses computer commands to program the machine, and the machine responds to these commands by drilling or cutting a piece of raw material into a specific shape. These machines produce a part with accurate dimensions for mass manufacturing.

Lathes

These specialised pieces of equipment rotate an item in a horizontal position, keeping the item fixed horizontally for either sanding or cutting it. One example would be a wooden dining leg which the manufacturer places on the lathe to cut intricate shapes into it and make it visually appealing.

Extrusion production line equipment

Extrusion equipment forces molten plastic through a nozzle to make items. Device housings are one possible product that entail the use of extrusion equipment. The operator has to monitor and adjust the machine to ensure the plastic remains within a certain temperature range and can flow evenly through the extrusion process. If any defective items extrude from the machine, the manufacturer must stop the machine and troubleshoot it until it’s resolved.

Industrial production lines

There are several different types of production processes. The manufacturer must choose which one will be most suitable for their business:

Job production. Often, this type of process involves creating a single item. Normally, these will be unique items or items for which the demand is low. One example of this could be a machine shop that makes an industrial part that the customer has ordered. The manufacturer makes each item individually and doesn’t start the next one until they’ve completed the item. Designer dresses are another example of this.

Batch production. This style of manufacture, which we discuss further below, entails producing a set of items together as a batch. For instance, this could be 120 of the same type of item that move through the same six steps together in the process, and each step carries them closer to becoming a finished product. Only when this batch is completed will the manufacturer move on to making the next product.

Mass production. This is a type of continuous production of items and involves a set of workstations that may all be in use at the same time. A guitar factory could have 10 workstations that have one guitar at each workstation in a different stage of production. Another guitar could be reaching the end of production while one is just entering the production cycle.

Mass customisation. This is a type of mass production line that manufactures unique items to the customer’s specifications. A mass customisation will call for special technology that conducts a unique process for each item. One example could be a production line that makes shirts, manufacturing each shirt differently based on the customer’s measurements and preferences.

Batch production vs mass production

The main difference between the two production types is that batch production produces everything one step at a time, performing the step on all of the items, and each unit moves together as a batch with the rest. This is different to mass production, in which the manufacturer implements all the steps concurrently and the manufacture of the items is continuous.

Batch production serves situations in which the batches are unique. A baker, for instance, could use the same equipment to bake bagels and cookies. Between batches, the baker can clean the equipment and reconfigure it. This production type enables manufacturers to use their equipment efficiently and is common in industries such as bakery or packaged food goods.

Batch production is excellent for any manufacturer who is looking to maintain a high level of quality throughout the production process. It also doesn’t require as large a workforce as mass production techniques do, but often, the workers are expected to be experts in their field.

Mass production

Mass production provides scope for the manufacturer to achieve production on a greater scale than batch production. This is because the manufacturer can use all of the machines at all times. Sometimes, the mass production could even be blessed with the sophistication to create different products on the same line e.g. making pineapple juice and orange juice on the same line, to obtain a high level of production.

Often, manufacturers employ mass production to produce larger amounts of larger products. This objective calls for larger machinery, and in the course of production, the objects will have to go through various stages of production. Cars are one example of this.

Production run

Production lines can create a number of units continuously. It’s normal for a factory to manufacture one set of items until it has produced the amount needed for inventory. This process of producing the items for a specific period of time is called the ‘production run’. Here are a few examples of production runs:

Batch production run

Every morning, a bakery conducts a production run of 14 batches of cookies. Each batch consists of 1 200 cookies. When the bakery has completed this production run, the machine undergoes a changeover. The bakery then begins a production run of making bread.

Mass production run

A luggage company sells 1 000 units of small tote bags every month, and they produce these bags in a production run of 10 000 units. The units then sit in inventory until the company sells them all, and although the production run only takes four days, the supply is enough to last 10 months. Once the company has completed the production run on the bags, they’ll perform a changeover on the production line and switch to a production run of making a different model of bag.

End of production

A solar panel producer experiences lots of demand for its products and begins a long production run of 10 months around the clock. This demand is so strong that it’s outweighing the supply, so inventory never builds up. The manufacturer decides to upgrade its products, and this is when the production run ends. Production then stops for several weeks as they change and configure the machines.

Continuous production

Continuous production is a type of production in which the items the manufacturer or producer is processing are in motion constantly. There are no interruptions between the different stages of production; however, the manufacturers may shut down machinery for maintenance, following weeks of careful planning.

Often manufacturers will use this type of approach for producing high-volume products that don’t need any customisation. This could be paper or pulp manufacturing and petrochemicals. Oil and gas refineries may use this approach. You may also find the approach being implemented for products that are consumed continually, meaning you might find it in water treatment plants or electricity production.

Continuous production contrasts immensely with batch manufacturing. The machinery and equipment are in use constantly, and there is often little variation in the process to produce different products. Batch manufacturing may be simpler, but continuous production can help the manufacturer overcome bottlenecks and increase the quality and the quantity of the products.

Make to stock

Manufacturing businesses can choose between making to order and making to stock. Making to order entails producing the orders when they receive them. This has several benefits, such as allowing the manufacturer to minimise waste, to reduce inefficiency and to customise products for their customers. Of course, as with everything, there are disadvantages, too: the manufacturer can experience spikes or falls in demands, must be ready to start producing orders as soon as possible and customers must wait longer for their products.

Make-to-stock orders, meanwhile, involve manufacturers making products for inventory, basing the amounts on sales forecasts and customer demand expectations. It’s a traditional strategy, and the aim is to match production and inventory with customer demand forecasts; this is no easy objective to accomplish, however, and can lead to dead stock, shortages or surplus inventory if there’s a miscalculation.

Making to stock allows the manufacturer to organise their resources carefully and maximise their efficiency. The manufacturer will also be able to devise a production schedule to ensure an ultra-smooth workflow. Importantly, they can minimise the customers’ wating time, too, because the manufacturer can ship the products out to the customers quickly.

Making to stock relies heavily on forecasting, but unfortunately, consumer trends can be highly unpredictable. Manufacturers that implement a make-to-stock system can experience sudden spikes or drops in sales. Making accurate sales forecasts is also a challenge and can leave the business with too much stock or too little of it. The nature of this system can keep the manufacturer in a perpetual state of having too little or too much stock.

Collective business systems

You may find a manufacturer is part of a collective business system. Normally, a collective business system is an organisation or association that consists of lots of businesses, tradespeople or professionals in the same field of effort or similar ones. These organisations can include professional associations, trade associations, marketing boards, business alliances and standards organisations.

In a collective business system, resources are pooled, information shared and other benefits are offered to the business, due to them being in the system. In addition, the system can offer certification and advertising to help the businesses compete more strongly in their marketplace.

How can you improve the manufacturing efficiency of your production line?

There are several different ways you can improve the efficiency of your production. Below are some tips.

Evaluate the production line

You can’t make any drastic or meaningful changes to your production line unless you understand how it already works. Even the best manufacturers experience problems. Ask your questions such as:

  • Which areas are efficient?
  • Which areas are inefficient?
  • How often do certain sections of the line break down?

To keep the production line running smoothly takes a lot of coordination of all the different parts of the line. In large systems, a failure at any point in the line can create bottlenecks, generating further repercussions down the line. Evaluate your system, and address the weaknesses.

Measure takt time accurately

The takt time is the rate which you must produce goods or services to meet customers’ demands. Measuring this time accurately is essential so that you can both your production targets and your customers’ expectations. The formula is as follows:

  • Takt time = available minutes for production / required units of production

When you have an accurate measurement of takt time, you can share it on the factory floor, and then everyone on the floor will know what success looks like for the unit. If they detect any problems that could threaten the level of output necessary, they can act sooner rather than later to solve the problem. Spotting problems early is decisive.  

Identify bottlenecks

Whenever there’s a breakdown on your line, a bottleneck occurs. Immediately, the assumption is that there’s a problem with the machine.

The machinery isn’t always to blame, though. Often, more ‘human’ components of the line are causing the bottleneck. A poorly organised preventive maintenance programme could be causing the bottleneck, or a technician could be slow to respond to incidents and help production get back on track.

Administrative processes are other potential causes of bottlenecks. Perhaps you’re waiting for a sign-off approval before being able to proceed? Maybe the sign-off for a replacement part is eating into downtime.

Create visible work instructions

If any part of the line requires human interaction or assembly by humans, setting out clear instructions and printing them for employees is a quick, easy way to boost the efficiency of your line. A lot of employers forget to provide visual cues for people working on the line, but the instructions will help people who weren’t involved in the design of the product to take part in the production or assembly of it correctly.

Standardise the work

This is common in large manufacturing environments. Making sure you’ve trained your employees well and that they understand the basics of the line will vastly improve the line’s efficiency. They don’t have to be experts in areas of the factory that require highly skilled experts, but you’ll be able to keep the line producing if you have someone who can step in when there’s a problem. Standardising work will keep the line productive and save you money.

Update your technology

The upfront investment in technology may be sizable, but it’s necessary to stay efficient so you can hold onto your employees and customers. You also need it to keep ahead of your competition. Let’s suppose a computer takes five or ten minutes to load: that translates into a delay for the new information to reach the production line, which will then translate into several hours of lost productivity per year (and per person).

Good technology is important for more than just efficiency, however; being willing to invest in it lifts morale and improves staff retention. An upgrade doesn’t always have to be expensive, either.

Provide good training for your employees

You might have invested in reliable equipment, but unless your employees know how to use it well, your production line won’t be as efficient as it could be. Investing in employees makes them feel appreciated and will increase motivation and morale on the manufacturing facility floor. Even though you’ll have a supervisor on the floor, you should be making sure your employees will give 100% effort regardless of whether a supervisor is there or not.

Automate effectively

You should make sure a machine doesn’t require constant supervision and maintenance. Automation must be effective to be efficient. It should complement the value of the workforce, which is their reasoning, their logic and decision-making. The machine(s) should free up your employees so they can maximise their potential for you and increase productivity in your place of business.

Production line equipment safety

Operating safely is crucial in manufacturing. When running a production line, you need to make sure the workers can perform their duties safely. How can you make your production line safe?

Maintain equipment regularly

Schedule a time to service equipment: all equipment needs servicing, and if you fail to service it this can lead to accidents, waste and inefficiency in production.

Note staff complaints

Listen when staff complain about something. If they’re complaining about something, it’s often a sign the cause of complaint is affecting their work. This is especially the case if the complaint is relating to the equipment. Check out these grievances immediately. Not checking could allow the faults to grow even worse.

Replace equipment when it’s necessary

All pieces of equipment have their own lifespan, and you should know these lifespans so that you also know when to replace them. Equipment could end up malfunctioning if not, so think about replacing any pieces of equipment that don’t function well. Don’t just replace them automatically, however; look at how you might be able to repair the item or rebuild it for the best performance.

Provide solid staff training

Training staff well is vital to make your production line safe. Don’t assume everyone knows what they need to know. Whether training is monthly or weekly, offer the training as frequently as you think the staff need it. Make the training easy to understand and practical, and leave the floor open for questions. Note that training is especially important for new employees, who are likely to be unfamiliar with the processes and, possibly, with the equipment.

Update health and safety

Health and safety help regulate working environments and keep them not just safe, but also ethical. You should have your own health and safety policy, and you should update it regularly. Make sure the policy protects your employees from any potential injuries your business operations could cause.

Delegate one or more roles

Safety on the floor is critical, so consider having someone in charge of monitoring health and safety. This person (or persons) could be responsible for things such as making sure the floor isn’t wet or that staff don’t bring food and drink into working areas. Setting up and implementing a structure is important. If not, there could be an accident, and the injured worker could claim compensation.

Production lines are an essential part of manufacturing. If you’d like to find out how we might be able to increase the efficiency of your own production line with our solutions, contact us and one of our team will be happy to advise you.

 

 

 

 

 



Why are loading docks important?

Loading docks are vital in the productivity and efficiency of lots of different types of businesses, from factories to retail stores. This crucial area of the premises enables goods to flow quickly in and out of the facility. Businesses use them for receiving and shipping raw materials or goods, and also for dispatching finished goods to customers. 

There are no rules as to how many loading docks you need. This will depend on the product the facility is making, the flow of the process, the size of the facility and whether it’s receiving goods or merely shipping them. 

Features of a loading dock

Loading docks have several important features to help the operators optimise the flow of goods in and out of the premises, and also to keep the loading dock safe for anyone who has to work in there. 

Loading dock seals and shelters

These two features are the two ways to seal a truck to the building after it has reversed into the loading dock. The shelter is a cover of industrial fabric curtains that covers a truck’s trailer and sides by sitting around 18 inches off the truck. Its purpose is to keep out elements such as wind, cold, heat, rain, snow and more out of the facility during loading operations, ensuring the comfort and safety of the employees.

The seal is a set of foam pads that push against the trailer to create an air-tight seal between the trailer and the dock. Gaps and leaks can cause significant losses in energy. The seals ensure environmental control and keep out rodents and other pests.

Dock bumpers

The dock bumpers are fitted to absorb the impact of the trailer. These durable rubber bumpers, which sit at the bottom of the dock, prevent damage to the concrete foundation wall. You’ll find them in different sizes, depending on the vehicles the loading dock is accommodating and the slope of the loading dock driveway.

Leveller plates

You’ll find the leveller plate inside the building, and its purpose is to get the loading apparatus into the truck’s trailer. Mechanical, hydraulic and air-powered dock levellers are the most common types. 

Overhead door

The overhead door acts much the same as a garage door by protecting the inside of the building from outside elements. If the facility is shipping goods constantly, it must have a fast, functional door. The type of facility will determine the type of door you should have.

Loading dock lighting

Loading dock lights keep the loading docks safe by lighting up the trailer while the employees are working in it, rather than forcing them to work in the dark. The flexible swinging arm on these lights allows you to direct the light where you need it to be. The design of the lights means they’ll stay in place once you set it in that position.

Good lighting on the outside of the building is also important so that the driver can see the dock pit and the building well. Signal lighting is essential, too, as it indicates to the driver and to the employees whether a trailer can enter or exit the dock safely or not.

Trailer restraints

You’ll locate the trailer restraint on the outside of the building, and it slides over and locks the trailer into place. These devices stop the trailer from moving during loading and unloading. If the trailer disconnects from the loading dock before the logistics team has completed loading or unloading the trailer, forklift trucks and other heavy equipment, or workers, could fall into the gap. Such an accident could have serious consequences.

Loading dock access points

Truck drivers must often deliver or collect some paperwork that contains information about the load. This is the case for just about every loading dock operation, and the driver must access the facility. That’s why if you’re an operator you should install visible, convenient access points and make these as secure as any other facility door. You can equip them with cameras, entry access systems and security systems.

Interlocking loading dock system

An interlocking loading dock system will keep the overhead door locked at all times. Only when a trailer is locked to the dock and to the restraints is the door unlocked. This stops workers from opening the door for any other reasons other than loading or unloading.

the benefits of a loading dock

Loading docks can benefit a business in several different ways. Here are some of the ones you can enjoy when you fit a good loading dock onto your facility:

Efficiency

Loading docks allow you to save time because you’re loading and unloading in the same place. The truck can park right next to your loading area so that workers can get on with the procedures with as little fuss as possible. The time saved can help the operator meet important deadlines. The trucks can get trucks back onto the road and items to the retailers or to customers quicker. 

Ability to handle loads of many sizes

Loading docks can cope with loads as heavy as 45.3 tonnes (100,000 lbs / 45,359 kilos). They’re designed to withstand heavy traffic. No matter what the product weighs, the loading dock isn’t likely to cave in under the pressure.

Safer operating areas

Loading docks make loading and unloading safer for employees. The areas where people can walk and where vehicles are operating are clearly marked out. Furthermore, employees don’t have to travel as far with the goods, so they can avoid back injuries. 

Straightforward

Loading dock equipment is surprisingly straightforward to use. Generally, staff can use it to conduct operations without having to consult a manual. Employees will require initial training in how to use the equipment and work in the loading dock safely, but this is easy to provide.

Dispatching items from a warehouse

As anxious as a manufacturer might be to get those items out to consumers or customers, they can’t just fire them out haphazardly. Warehouses must follow a procedure before they send them on the next stage of their journey, or of the final one. Here’s a what a typical procedure might look like:

Planning of the deliveries

Planning is extremely important because the dispatch is part of a more comprehensive operation. Organising a dispatch consists of the following:

  • knowing the orders that must prepared and sent during the day;
  • sorting the list of orders necessary to prepare;
  • assigning orders to the carriers and the times they must pick up the goods;
  • schedule loading dock occupancy;
  • provide the space required in the temporary storage area.

Consolidation of goods

Consolidation and sorting is more a part of the picking and packing process, but it’s so close to the dispatch area that it’s relevant to include it as part of the overall shipping process. This consists of grouping together products from various picking zones in the warehouse; however, the process will depend on the type of picking the operator chooses.

Goods documentation and conditioning check

The dispatch is the last contact between the product and the warehouse. The final document verification will take place during this process. This verification is to ensure there are no mistakes and that the customers will receive what they’ve ordered.

The process entails checking the various documents (goods receipt, picking order, delivery note, road map, waybill etc), confirming all the products ordered are the ones on the pallet or in the package and verifying all of this in the warehouse management system.

These aren’t the only tasks in the process. The operator must also check the order weight and volume conform to carrier requirements, and then label it. They then package the items, either in boxes or on pallets; seal them; and stretch wrap them.

Loading the goods

Having completed the above procedures, it’s almost time to dispatch the items. There are still a few tasks to conduct before the operator can go ahead with this, however. These are:

  • confirming the trailer waiting for to receive the load is the right one;
  • placing the load onto the trailer and balance it out, as well as perform other operations for safe loading, such as checking the trailer has been securely anchored to the loading docks;
  • handing the documentation to the relevant carrier for signing.

Note that loading and unloading trailers carries several health and safety risks. You can find out more about loading and unloading truck trailers safely in our Ultimate Guide to Safe Loading and Unloading of Vehicles.

Production lines are an essential part of manufacturing. If you’d like to find out how we might be able to increase the efficiency of your own production line with our solutions, contact us and one of our team will be happy to advise you.

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loading docks and dispatching items from warehouses

Of course, once production has finished and the goods are ready, they can’t sit in a warehouse forever; the manufacturer wants to get them out there to retailers. Two important elements in this are the loading dock, which is where logistics teams will load goods (and unload them) onto the truck trailers for dispatch, and the dispatch process itself. Below is a quick look at loading docks and the dispatch process.

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We help businesses lighten loads and are highly regarded as the world's leading loading and unloading solutions provider in the logistics industry. Over the last 60 years, we've helped thousands of businesses streamline their logistics operations to be more cost-efficient, more sustainable, and more health and safety-conscious. Learn more About Us here.

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