One of the most significant areas that the logistics process that has evolved in recent years is automated loading systems. The benefits are numerous and significant, from a reduction in labour costs to positive effects on sustainability. We spoke to the team at Joloda Hydraroll to find out more.
One of the main benefits of an automated loading system is speed. Automated trailer loading solutions (or ATLs) can be incredibly rapid, even with heavy loads. Using one, a 30-ton trailer load can be completed within just two minutes. Overall, automated loading systems tend to be around three times faster than conventional methods.
Reduction in costs
While the upfront costs of a modern automated loading system can be significant, the savings are also potentially massive. Typically, businesses that purchase an automated loading system will see an ROI in just three years.
One of the most significant areas where costs are reduced is labour. Unautomated loading is labour intensive and can require a large team working around the clock. Automated loading systems aren’t entirely void of human components of the course, but they’re far more efficient, and mean that the people who are involved can be more productive in the areas that they’re actually needed.
Another area where costs can be reduced is with machinery. Automated loading systems generally don’t require forklift trucks, which can significantly reduce expenditure, in multiple areas such as procurement, maintenance, operation and fueling.
Less damage to products
Modern automated loading solutions are incredibly effective at decreasing damage done to products during the picking and loading process. With belt loading systems, it’s not uncommon to have a 0% accident rate, as the more traditionally dangerous parts of the loading process (such as complex forklift manoeuvering) are eliminated from the process. Damage to products is often accompanied by equipment damage and injury to employees, both of which can be avoided through adopting more modern automated solutions.
A potentially surprising but important benefit to automated loading systems is the positive impact on sustainability. As an increased focus is placed on sustainability in every aspect of business, it’s important to try to achieve a reduction in emissions wherever possible. Automated loading systems eliminate the need for hydrocarbon-powered machinery such as forklift trucks, saving money in the process.
As less damage to products occurs in automated systems, this also reduces the environmental impact of the overall logistics process.
At a time when rents are at an all-time high, it’s incredibly important to optimise the use of space in warehouses and sorting facilities.
One way that automated loading systems save space is through speed; as one automated dock can load at around three times the speed of a traditional dock, you only need a third of the number of overall docks to load lorries at the same speed as you would have done so before.
Automated systems also tend to require less space for forklift trucks and other machines, as they are no longer necessary.