3 Tips to Get Your Conveyors Ready for Peak Season
[Image Attribution: SDI Productions via Getty Images]
The secret to keeping up—and even getting ahead—during busy periods like the year-end holiday rush can be found in the tools and processes you use to move materials in, out, and around your facility. One of the most important features in your material handling toolkit, however, is designed to stay put. That feature is conveyors, which keep inventory and packages moving, so your team can focus their energy on getting orders out the door.
But this year’s holiday rush will have your bearings and rollers spinning overtime. The good news: It’s not too late to make sure your conveyors are in peak condition to handle the uptick in activity. Follow these three tips to prepare your conveyors for the year-end push.
1. Ensure your team has the right equipment for the job
As your material handling needs increase this season, your existing conveyor space may need to be adjusted to accommodate a larger volume of boxes, crates, totes, and bins.
Consider adding portable and flexible conveyors, which let you quickly create more space whenever and wherever it’s needed. As your workload increases, you can expand your conveyor lines to make them longer, or set up new lines in shipping areas, in loading docks, or on plant floors.
Once the holiday rush is over, the conveyors can easily be contracted and stored away until they’re needed again.
Depending on your needs, nonretractable fixed or movable conveyors may be a better fit. Choose between skate wheel and roller gravity versions.
2. Conduct proper maintenance and take care of necessary repairs
A lapse in routine maintenance can lead to unexpected and costly downtime. That’s especially true for conveyors, whose critical role in your facility means they see frequent and repeated use, and for which workarounds can be tedious and tiring for your crew. Over time, that level of use can add up to broken parts, misalignment, and worn components that slow workers down and may cause damage to materials—or even injury to employees.
Take the time now to conduct a full maintenance assessment so you’re not facing delays when delivery timelines are tight:
- Check for and replace broken or worn rollers, skate wheels, and bearings
- Check for and remove dust, dirt, and grime buildup
- Make sure skate wheels and rollers spin freely
- Test locking brakes, speed reducers, and package stops to make sure they work
- Order replacement parts so they’re on hand to make quick fixes as needed
3. Keep safety your top priority
Workers in the retail supply chain are being stretched even more than they usually are this time of year. As the material-handling workload increases, so will the pace at which your employees strive to keep up. But working faster in the name of productivity may result in overlooking safety.
Remind your team about these best practices for safely working with any type of conveyor:
- DON’T wear loose clothing
- DON’T wear jewelry
- DON’T sit or stand on the conveyor
- DON’T exceed the conveyor’s load capacity
- DO tie and tuck back long hair
- DO follow lock-out procedures before removing stuck items or replacing a component
- DO use and abide by appropriate safety signage and floor tape
Don’t forget about seasonal workers who may be new to the team and not familiar with conveyors. Make sure they’re trained to follow these best practices as well.
Whether you need replacement parts or extra conveyor runs, Global Industrial is here to help you keep up with your peak season material handling needs. Contact one of our product experts today to learn more.
The information contained in this article is for informational, educational, and promotional purposes only and is based on information available as of the initial date of publication. It is the reader’s responsibility to ensure compliance with all applicable laws, rules, codes and regulations. If there is any question or doubt in regard to any element contained in this article, please consult a licensed professional. Under no circumstances will Global Industrial be liable for any loss or damage caused by your reliance on this article.