|WHAT MATERIALS HANDLING|
Extract from an article written by our MD Gerhard Potgieter a few years back but which is still very relevant today.
Comments made to me by people in industry prompted this article noting a few common misconceptions about materials handling.
"Materials handling costs are minor compared to those associated with actual manufacture."
This may be so in many industries. Is it so in yours? So few companies keep a true record of materials handling costs that they are unable to answer this question quantitatively.
"To solve a materials handling problem all you need to do is choose the right equipment."
Whereas industry will readily investigate all aspects of a production process before deciding on the type of equipment to be use there is often a reluctance to do the same when materials handling problems are involved. In the same way a detailed analysis of the materials handling system should be done before the final equipment is selected.
During a critical analysis, questions such as:
|- why is the material being moved?|
- is the handling really necessary?
- is the handling necessary at the particular time?
- must the handling be done in the existing manner?
and so on, often lead to adaptations or complete changes in the handling system. Only after this stage should we start to consider choice of equipment.
"Materials handling systems require a higher degree of mechanisation."
This misconception is probably the most dangerous on of all. The economies that can be expected from improved materials handling are not necessarily related to the sophistication of the equipment selected.
|Click to go back to Materials Handling and Systems Development|