As the demands of modern distribution rise, many manual distribution centers are looking to automation for better efficiency and productivity. An automation project, however, is no small undertaking.
This is why it is crucial to partner with a solutions provider that will not only streamline the project, but also ensure you receive the greatest return on your investment. But how can you be sure your provider will reliably meet expectations and project goals?
Consider narrowing your search to those compliant with ISO standards. Developed by the International Organization for Standardization, these standards are designed to help businesses worldwide operate more effectively.
Look for a provider that is certified in three key areas:
- Quality management
- Occupational health & safety management
- Environmental management
ISO 9001:2015 and a commitment to quality
An ISO 9001:2015 certification demonstrates that a company has procedures to consistently provide high-quality systems and services. All processes are structured and controlled—from concept and design through installation and beyond—so that the provider can:
- Operate efficiently to keep project costs down
- Proactively address issues to prevent delays
- Deliver a quality system that meets regulatory requirements
Further, your provider should also drive the same quality standards across their entire supply chain. This includes procuring parts and materials from ethical suppliers and hiring subcontractors with high levels of expertise.
ISO 45001:2018 and a focus on safety
A solutions provider that conforms to the ISO 45001:2018 standard will have frameworks in place to support safe working practices and mitigate risks.
Your provider should take preventative action by conducting a risk assessment at your site before work begins and throughout the duration of the project installation and commissioning. The machinery, layout and the entire system concept can then be designed in a way that minimizes operator risks of injury to the lowest level possible. Moreover, all personnel should be trained on best safety practices and potential hazards, ensuring a risk-free environment.
ISO 14001:2015 and sustainability
Amid rising concerns over pollution, climate change and rapidly depleting natural resources, companies worldwide are taking greater social and environmental responsibility. As a result, many distribution centers are exploring automation as a means to reduce their ecological footprints.
Choose a solutions provider that promotes green values in its customers, solutions and systems. An ISO 14001:2015 certification ensures the provider practices environmentally friendly operations. Whether your goal is to save energy, reduce waste, or limit emissions, they can help you develop a sustainable, durable and efficient system that supports your green initiatives.
Culture of continuous improvement
Ultimately, the cornerstone of ISO certification is continuous improvement. It’s not enough to simply put policies in place. Companies need to actively assess their processes to continuously improve their operations and products.
By choosing an ISO certified solutions provider, you will not only receive a high-quality automated system that meets your current business needs but also gain a dedicated partner that will keep you on the cutting edge of technology.
Author Miia Vironen