How Conveyors Help Companies Achieve Delivery Targets

Conveyors are automated systems that increase productivity and improve delivery times.  They have been around for hundreds of years and are increasingly more efficient. In the past conveyors were used in mining and farming to make it easier for workers to move large heavy items. The Ford car factories used conveyors to increase the rate of new car production.

Most recently conveyors are used in huge warehouses to prepare items for delivery. Amazon is renowned for its epic conveyor systems which are up to a mile long. Using conveyors to prepare goods for delivery results in more efficiency and the capacity to deliver thousands and even millions of items every day.

The delivery industry relies on speedy drivers who can deliver up to 200 items a day. It is therefore essential that the warehouses are able to stock up the vans with the correct consignments in order to meet delivery targets. 

We have become very reliant on next day delivery services and have abandoned high street stores so we can purchase a wide range of items which will arrive at our doors quickly.  This puts immense pressure on online companies to deliver on time or we will just order from other firms who do it much better.

Online Sales Facts

Selling products online is big business as people increasingly rely on technology in all areas of their lives.  People want to buy their good now and have them with them as soon as possible. Different shift patterns, long working days and extortionate parking costs make online shopping a very easy option.  High streets are becoming deserted because they are no longer able to stock the items we are looking for. This causes shops to close and increases our need to purchase online.  

We have created a vicious circle which is significantly changing the way we shop  Here are some online shopping facts that highlight our reliance on the internet to purchase goods.

  • Approximately 1.8 billion people (worldwide) bought online goods in 2018.
  • In 2021 e-commerce accounted for 17% of total global retail sales.
  • The most popular product purchased was clothing.
  • In 2016 32% of online sales were via a mobile device.
  • 46% of global retail sales were via an app in 2016. (Source: Statista.com)

E-commerce only holds 15% of the world sales market but is increasing in stature annually.  Many companies have a website for online retail as well as high street and out of town stores enabling them to cater to different types of shoppers. 

How Do Conveyors Help?

Conveyors are automated systems that transport goods around a warehouse preparing them for delivery quicker.  They are usually modular in nature with staff doing different jobs such as selecting the item, packing and addressing and loading on to the lorries.  If storage units did not use conveyors in this way each item would have to be manually moved around the warehouse. The result would be an extremely slow delivery process.  Companies would simply not be able to meet delivery targets resulting in angry customers and exhausted staff.

The prime example of a company who makes good use of vast conveyor systems is Amazon.  In some warehouses, the conveyors are a mile long and staff have to work against the clock to ensure you receive your product the next day.  Amazon is so successful at meeting targets that customers return again and again to the site to purchase a whole host of goods. Conveyor systems are certainly the way forward where increasing sales and delivery targets are concerned.

If you would like to find out more about conveyors contact us and we would be happy to discuss your options.

The Importance Of Conveyors In The Car Industry

Conveyors and Henry Ford are synonymous with automobile production.  Ford, the founder of the Ford Motor Company, was the brainchild of assembly lines and mass production.  He founded his first production line in 1913 aiming to make car production cheaper and quicker. His first assembly line at the Ford plant in Michigan became the benchmark for production lines all over the world.

Ford’s aim was to, ‘put the world on wheels’, (Source: Ford UK) he achieved his goal by mass-producing affordable simply designed cars.  Conveyors made mass production possible because cars moved to the engineers allowing many cars to be constructed at once.  Before production lines, cars were made one at a time which was extremely expensive and slow.

Modern car production lines are very similar to Ford’s original blueprint.  Robots positioned in various points along the line increase the accuracy and speed cars are built.  All car companies use production lines inspired by Henry Ford’s original design. In 2016 over 70 million cars were produced globally.  The car industry is a huge business which will continue to thrive as we move towards electric cars.

Conveyors And Car Production Lines

Conveyors revolutionised car production because it increased efficiency and the the ability to work on many cars at a time.  Cars were painstakingnly built one at a time before production lines making it time consuming and expensive. Building cars this way was a waste of manpower because engineers had to take it in turns to work on each car.  Production lines make it possible to work on diffiferent parts of many cars at the same time so noone is standing around doing nothing.

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The principle behind production lines is very simple and is applicable to many industries. Conveyors have a number of work stations along them where the cars stop to have work done to them.  It is no surprise car companies all over the world have adopted Henry Ford’s assembly lines to manufacture cars. Ford is still one of the leading manufacturers of passenger cars with the Ford Focus being the most popular car in 2016.

The Car Industry And The Economy

Car manufacturers are not the only people who profit from the billion pound car industry. Suppliers, car dealers and marketing companies rely on revenue from car production. The size of the automoblie supply market world wide is 650 bn Euros.  Bosch is the largset supplier with 44 thousand employees. Millions of people rely on income generated by the car industry. (Source: statista.com)

The general public and many businesses rely on cars to go to work and fulfil their job roles.  Delivery drivers, carers, taxi drivers, medical staff and muic teachers are just a few of the people of the people who rely on cars to do their jobs.  According to thismoney.co.uk 1 in 6 UK jobs require a valid driving licence due to shift work, remote locations and poor public transport.  This applies to jobs that do not involve travelling about.

We all rely on transport to get us to work and to look after the people we care about.  If you would like to increase your company’s production by investing in conveyors contact us and we would be happy to offer advice.

How Santa Uses Conveyors In His Workshop

Conveyors are in great demand at this time of year. They are working overtime in Amazon warehouses, supermarkets, airports and of course Santa’s workshop.  Santa has made major investments in conveyors due to an explosion in population and greater demands from children globally. The team at the North Pole work tirelessly every year to make and deliver toys to the millions of children in the world, and our conveyors are a crucial part of this.

Initially children were satisfied with an apple, orange, banana and sweets from Santa so processing and delivering presents was simple.  These days children ask for bikes, games consoles, dolls houses, ponies and other large items. The logistics of delivering such a large amount of presents in one night is phenomenal.  Even with the flux capacitor in the sleigh time is still of the essence.

Tendering out the, ‘Naughty and Nice’, list to the Elf On The Shelf gives Santa more time to organise his team.  Conveyors transport the presents into the sleigh, which is actually a Tardis and much bigger on the inside than outside.  There are conveyors in the sleigh which transport the presents to the top in country and child order.

The History Of Santa Claus

The original Santa Clause was St Nicholas who was the patron Saint of sailors.  He was a born in the 3rd century in Myra in Anatolia which is now modern day Turkey. Nicholas was a Catholic Bishop and fisherman He became very wealthy due to inheriting money from his family. Nicholas was a very generous man and gave gifts of money and food to those in need. It is believed that the Christmas tradition of him giving presents began when he left money in the stockings of three poor girls.  He was granted a sainthood due to his enduring generosity and became the patron saint of children. (Source: Listverse)

When St Nicholas Became Santa Clause

St Nicholas continued to ‘deliver’ presents to children in England until the 16th century.  He became unpopular during the 16th century due to the reformation of the church. This left a vacancy for someone to deliver presents to all of the children.  Father Christmas or Old Man Christmas took on the mighty job and has been delivering presents to children ever since. St Nick had a revival during the Victorian era resulting in DR Clement Clarke penning the famous poem, ‘Twas The Night Before Christmas’. The song even introduced us to Santa’s eight reindeers which were; Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donner and Blitzen.

Santa’s Red Suit

He is known by many different names now; Santa, Father Christmas and Kris Kringle and is known all over the world.  The legend of Santa Clause built up speed and more stories and songs were written about him. Robert Ness drew a picture of Santa wearing a, ‘Stars and Stripes’, outfit for Harper’s Bazaar in 1863.  Ness introduced us to the Santa in a red suit and wobbly belly not Coca Cola which is an urban legend. In 1949 the song Jingle Bells introduced us to Rudolph who is the famous red nosed reindeer who saved Santa on a foggy night. (Source: WhyChristmas.com).  Santa continues to bring joy to children and adults all over the world.  We all wait in excited anticipation for Santa to bring presents and snack on sherry and mince pies.  The age old question remains – How does he do it?

Conveyors In Santa’s Workshop

Conveyors play a major role in Santa’s workshop.  The sheer quantity of presents the elves have to process requires automation.  There were lots of ‘Elf and Safety’ issues due to the elves sustaining injuries due to the heavy lifting. In the beginning conveyors were part of the production line because all of the presents were made in the warehouse.  These days the conveyors move the toys from toy manufacturers around.

We can only take a guess at what the workshop looks like because no one has ever been in there.  The sheer size of the operation suggests that the conveyor system is at least a hundred times bigger than Amazon’s largest warehouse.  It is obvious the workshop exists on many different dimensions and is invisible to the human eye.

Researchers suggest that Santa is actually a great physicist who is able to take advantage of the theory or relativity.  This knowledge and of course a generous sprinkling of magic ensures the sleigh is full of presents on Christmas Eve. Delivering the presents is an entirely different matter as they are beamed into each house.  Chances are they will be beamed directly from the workshop in the future. Santa will still take his sleigh out but only so he can exercise the reindeers.

If you would like to install conveyors in your workshop contact us and we would be happy to offer advice.

Who Invented The First Conveyors?

Conveyors are a mechanical piece of equipment that enables the movement of materials from one place to another. There is a wide range of different applications for conveyors including; the motor industry, construction, food industry, electronics, farming, scrap, pharmaceuticals,  supermarkets and airports. They increase the rate of production and have revolutionised manufacturing.

There are many different types of conveyors including; gravity, belt, bucket, pneumatic, vibrating, chain, and vertical conveyors. Conveyors move either mechanically or by using the force of gravity.  Industrial conveyors either transport boxes and heavy items along the factory floor or transport bulk items such as grains, salt, coal etc.

Conveyor belts have been in operation since the late 18th century. Modern conveyor belts are similar in construction to the leather and wooden conveyors of the past. The first conveyors were very primitive in design and used to transport coal, ores and other metals.  Henry Ford made conveyor belts famous through the product of the Model T Cars in 1913.

The First Conveyors

Historians estimate the first conveyor belts were invented at the end of the 18th century.  They had wooden frames and leather belt and the basis of modern conveyor belts we see today.  Steam was the main source of power for conveyor belts in the beginning. The first example of combining conveyors and steam power was the production of biscuits for sailors.  

The Onset of the Industrial Revolution saw great advancements in conveyor technology.  Thus enabling the transportation of bulk materials such as coal. The first steel conveyor system was developed in Sweden. In 1905 Richard Sutcliffe patented the first conveyor system used in coal mines.

Model T Cars

Henry Ford drew the world’s attention to conveyor systems in 1913 through the production of the Model T Cars.  Production was faster and more efficient because workers did not have to keep moving their tools to each car. Therefore reducing the production time to 93 minutes.  By 1919 conveyors were part of all production lines in the automotive industry.

Modern Systems

Modern conveyor systems are very similar to the very first conveyors but the technology within them is constantly developing. The demand for conveyors is greater than ever due to the surge in online sales.  Amazon’s fulfilment centre in Robertsville has 14 miles of conveyor belts to help sort and package items for shipment. The video below demonstrates how their vast system works.

 

The modern world is the perfect environment for the development of conveyors as we all rely on goods delivered to our door.  As the population increases there is a greater demand for quicker and more efficient ways to ensure people and companies get the goods they ordered on time and in good condition.

If you would like to find out more about conveyors contact us and we would be happy to discuss the options we have available.