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ROI for Warehouse and Manufacturing Automation: A Panel Discussion

December 5, 2023

WERC North Texas 2023 Automation Panel Discussion

Above: James Murphy moderates a panel discussion on automation return-on-investment with Mitch Smith of Hytrol, Nils Hart of Muratec and Bryan Gauger of Cisco-Eagle

Cisco-Eagle’s Bryan Gauger joined Mitch Smith of Hytrol and Nils Hart of Muratec for a Warehousing Education and Research Council panel on automation projects return-on-investment. The discussion revolved around ROI factors ranging from labor to safety. Because labor and money are both tight, justifying capital expenditures is more important than ever. Here are the panel’s thoughts on critical ROI issues:

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Posted in Automation, Labor & Efficiency|

November 2023 Insights: Warehouse & Manufacturing Injury Rates

November 30, 2023

Cisco-Eagle insights

This month, we delve into the reported high rates of injury and illness among warehouse workers, and the ways federal agencies are working to address it. Also, a dive into employment markets – where manufacturers and warehouse operators are falling short, and where the sector may be able to pull workers. Plus, we discuss automation’s rebound in 2024, shipping issues, and a bit more.

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Posted in Industry Insights|

How to Singulate Products on Your Conveyor System

November 28, 2023

singulation conveyor systems merge multiple lines into single lanes of products

What is singulation?

Singulation separates and single-lines cartons and other loads into lines as they move on a conveyor. Bulk and parcel applications frequently require singulation. Conveyors and control systems use multi-speed belts, dedicated singulators, skewed rollers and side-driven motors to unscramble multiple lines of products into single-file. Think of singulation as the process of organizing cartons or other loads into a single, neat line for future processing.

Singulation is pivotal for in sorting and organizing materials ranging from boxes to fragile electronics to sturdy automotive components on conveyor systems.

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Posted in Conveyor Optimization|

Warehouse Parking Lot Safety – What Are Your Best Protection Options?

November 16, 2023

Factory parking lot

Creating a culture of safety is a high priority (and always ongoing) in any facility that values its operations. Whether it is safer forklift/pedestrian interactions, ergonomic improvements, or machine protection, every warehouse is constantly working to improve the conditions within its walls.

But what about the area outside, say, in the parking lot? Sure, it’s not a glamorous area, but you want to keep your workers safe and secure there too!

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Posted in Safety & Ergonomics|

Pallet Rack: Anchoring, Safety and OSHA Compliance Factors

November 9, 2023

heavy duty die storage rack anchored to a concrete warehouse floor.

Warehouses use pallet racks because they maximize storage space, streamline operations, and organize inventory like no other system. We discuss rack safety in depth because it’s so critical for protecting people, property, inventory and facilities. A rack safety fundamental is anchoring: the right anchors, installed correctly, into a subfloor designed for that purpose. Think of the floor-rack connection as the very basis of your rack’s balance and capacity.

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Posted in Pallet & Warehouse Racks|

October Insights: The “Robot Tax”, Worker Concerns with Automation

October 26, 2023

Morning coffee with Cisco-Eagle photo
Coverage of issues relating to automation, labor management, material handling, inventory shrinkage, and labor issues for industrial facilities and the people who operate them.

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Posted in Industry Insights|

Drum Handling Options – Applications Matter

October 19, 2023

Forklift using drum handling attachment to move drums

While not every facility moves or uses drums for storage, those that do have a necessity to keep them safe. Whether they contain hazardous material or not, the effort to keep barrels upright and from spilling never ends, because who wants lost product or an unsafe work environment?

To ensure your workers keep drums handled correctly, there are multiple solutions available.

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Posted in Material Handling|

Automation: Starting with a Clean Slate

October 10, 2023

manual and robotic palletizing.

How should your next automation project be evaluated? In many cases, companies try to replicate a manual processes through automation: if a person once rotated a tote, then picked from it and placed the contents into a container, that’s what the automation does. This kind of solution can provide excellent results, but may not be the optimal solution. What if you began with operational goals in mind that imagine a solution without the manual process?

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Posted in Automation, Labor & Efficiency|

Buffers, Conveyors, Robotics and Automation: What Works, What Doesn’t

October 3, 2023

conveyor system with cartons accumulating as a buffer.

Most every manufacturing or distribution facility builds in storage and handling buffers – and for good reason. Buffers hold product or processes when work flow isn’t balanced. For instance, a conveyor buffer may exist between picking and packing operations. This allows picking to continue even if the packing, quality control or shipping departments are backed up. Buffers maintain balance between functions and ensure continuity.

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Posted in Automation, Labor & Efficiency|

Insights: Manufacturing Gender Gap, Automation Pitfalls to Avoid

September 26, 2023

Morning coffee with Cisco-Eagle photo

Where can automation cause issues? Intralox explores the pitfalls of downtime and the ways to address it below. We also examine issues relating to recruiting women to manufacturing careers, the need to reshore, Tennessee’s efforts to build a modern industrial workforce, and more.

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Posted in Industry Insights|

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