When it comes to the design, flexibility, and integration of label automation to your existing tube and vial labeling processes, efficiency and accuracy are of the utmost importance. Ensuring a seamless process that improves data communication and boosts efficiencies requires a dedicated and experienced partner. Below are seven elements of service to consider as a business in the healthcare industry selecting an automation or integration partner. Cheers to an improved labeling process!
7 elements of service to consider when selecting an automation or integration partner:
- On-Site Audit
- Tube and Vial Label Planning & Expertise
- Installation and Commissioning
- Pre-Scheduled, On-Site Maintenance
- Local Engineering Resources
- Dedicated Global Customer Service
- Custom Software Development for Various Applications
1. On-Site Audit
You know the goal your business is trying to accomplish with automation better than anyone does; however, it is beneficial to include a fresh set of eyes that has expertise in the automation space to identify opportunities for improvement. Before an on-site audit is planned, a Computype expert is assigned to facilitate your automation project, and act as your single and dependable point of contact to ensure no questions go unanswered, and no problems go unsolved.
While the solution you may choose to pursue depends on your specific labware, goals, and application, an on-site audit should always be an option if you so choose to pursue it. Oftentimes, the usefulness of a walk through depends on the scope of the product or implementation project. However, it is always beneficial for your potential supplier to get a sense for the current labeling process, identify any associated challenges, and obtain a solid understanding of exactly what you are hoping to accomplish with the investment of tube and vial label automation.
While tube and vial label automation options are typically quite standard, Computype is able to customize these systems as needed to fit your unique specifications. Furthermore, if there are many custom parts of the automation solution, that would warrant a pre-site evaluation. This would ensure that before the solution is even constructed, the specifications have been checked and optimized to all of your specific business needs.
2. Tube and Vial Label Planning & Expertise
As elementary as it may sound, ensuring the labels themselves are designed to work in conjunction with the tube and vial label applicator is no easy venture. Specifically, it is imperative to find the correct material and liner formulation and determine label size that will optimize effectiveness in your specific process. It is important that labels both peel and apply to perfection in order to increase the throughput time that automation allows for, and the label formulation determines that.
Achieving the proper label formulation and adhesive to meet the needs of your application, integration with the applicator itself, and the harsh environments the labware may need to survive further down the process takes engineering and expertise that should not be entrusted to multiple suppliers. Make sure that a single supplier can provide you with both the equipment and consumables to avoid any potential hang-ups later. At Computype, the discussion around automation-friendly tube and vial labels happens as part of the on-site audit, and any necessary changes to the construction of your barcode labels will be included in discussion for the project proposal.
3. Installation and Commissioning
The partnership with your automation supplier should not end after the purchase order is sent. Your partner should provide a clear timeline that includes things like design time, shipping plans, testing, and training to ensure immediate use once the system is installed. While this varies based on the specific application, your partner should plan to make an appearance on-site at your location soon after, if not the same day that equipment arrives to help unpack, assemble, and inspect. From there, collaborative installation and training should take place with the priority being an efficient and complete integration.
Similarly to on-site audit service options, this element of service is likely to vary based on products and systems. Installation and commissioning is dependent on the scope of the system or implementation taking place. If you are receiving an off-the-shelf product, likely your provider will not arrive the day it gets there, it might be within a week. However, with custom automation, your partner should be there right as it arrives to ensure proper unpacking and installation.
4. Pre-Scheduled, On-Site Maintenance
Pre-scheduled service will usually differ on a situation-by-situation basis—there are oftentimes service contracts instituted for on-site hygiene visits. These are important, as you will be relying heavily on the label automation system, so any downtime that may occur needs to be minimal. Since your team will have had basic training after installation, any minor glitches can likely be taken care of in-house, however, choosing an automation partner that provides planned on-site hygiene visits to ensure system functionality can help to extend the life of the system and minimize costly downtime—especially in manufacturing environments where the machine itself might be in constant operation.
Like hygiene visits, on-site maintenance is another service that is offered through a service contract if you so choose. At Computype, for instance, if a customer that has opted out of a service contract needs on-site maintenance or assistance, we will quote a visit and get someone out to your facility as soon as possible.
5. Local Engineering Resources
It is important when integrating automation systems into your business processes that you have resources nearby in case you need some extra assistance. An engineering team is usually the optimal group to have in close proximity, should part of your automation system encounter technical issues. Most partners should have a team that works closely with your company and your specific processes to determine what is needed even after the sale and post-installation.
6. Dedicated Global Customer Service
Collaborating with a tube and vial label automation supplier that genuinely cares about you, and understands how label automation influences your process should be your ultimate goal. Don’t be so quick to source from less qualified suppliers in the spirit of saving budget. Your partner should be just that: a partner. They should provide guidance, expertise, concern, and above all else, a fair and equitable tube and vial label automation solution that you can trust.
7. Custom Software Development For Various Applications
An element of service that you want to look for when choosing a tube and vial label automation supplier is custom software development for various applications. With this capability, you can have the affirmation that your specific problems will be solved through a custom solution. This allows for the toughest of challenges in relation to tube and label automation to be addressed in your facility.
So there you have it. Our 7-steps of service to ensure that your decision process be as informed and comprehensive as possible when considering tube and vial label automation.
Collaborating to provide efficient and accurate labeling automation systems is one of our specialties here at Computype. We are proud of our tube and vial label automation systems that work to combine automation equipment, consumables, and unparalleled service.