Before purchasing a major piece of case labeling equipment for your company, you want to make sure that a particular brand and model will help you achieve your operational and quality objectives within your intended budget. That’s why it is important to first establish all of your business needs and desires, so you can cross reference equipment features and benefits that are the most mission-critical to your business. It is within this framework that a wise purchasing decision is made for case labelers.
Factors and Features to Consider
Here are some of the most important factors and features to consider when researching and deciding on case labelers:
- Functionality: While machine versatility is very important, your company may not necessarily require a plethora of functions and may only need a more streamlined, simple solution. Consider whether or not you really need a corner labeler that can handle side, top, and front sections of cases. Perhaps you need a system that that has multi-panel capability integrated with a printer for handling simple bar code, lot, product or batch information. Or, maybe you need a printer that can handle more complex variable data.
- Scalability: While you may not need a robust set of features now, consider if you have expansion plans for the future. It’s important to think long term so that you can ensure the case labeling equipment can scale with your growth and application diversification. It is also critical to think about whether this equipment would integrate well with other systems and equipment currently in use, or that you may add in the future.
- Quality: No matter what business you are in, quality is a top priority. With this type of equipment, there are a number of quality concerns. For example, it is important to know how clearly the label will appear as well as whether it has a wipe mechanism, which helps to ensure that the label is firmly adhered to every case.
- Ease of Use: Every piece of equipment must be easy to operate and maintain no matter what type of company you are. This can help save in training time and costs and ensure production is not interrupted. Ease of use may also mean that you focus on machines that have minimal moving parts that can break down or that need to be monitored or managed by human hand. You may find that equipment with programmable functions will provide the greatest ease of use.
- Space: As more companies are minimizing their available space to save on overhead costs, it is important to find equipment that fits with your footprint requirements. Make sure the unit can be configured to fit where you need it, perhaps even having the capability to be mounted creatively on the carton or case production line.
In looking at the criteria to consider for case labelers, remember the following points:
- Functionality is important but you may not necessarily need all the features offered, so be sure to focus on a machine that has the most features you need rather than one with many options that aren’t relevant for your business.
- Think long term in how you may grow or adapt, requiring a scalable piece of equipment that can be upgraded or reconfigured to expand with your firm.
- Quality and ease of use are always important. Make sure the equipment meets those expectations.
- Space is becoming more important as companies try to do more within less physical space. Technology is often on the same page, offering smaller or more flexible machines that can fit challenging configurations. Be sure that you measure and weigh these factors.