Clients needing small warehouse systems, minor extensions or simple upgrades turn instinctively to smaller suppliers. However, solutions from larger system integrators can often match the price and come with added benefits, argues David James, KNAPP’s Regional Director for UK, Sweden, Norway and Finland.
Companies finding that they require a simple, low-complexity transport system will often flick through the classified ads in the leading trade journals and seek out the services of an SME. It’s understandable that the same reasoning we apply in domestic situations ,selecting, say, a plumber ,of ‘small is fine and will probably save me money’ gets transposed into the work environment. But is this logic right when it comes to material handling systems?
In fact, many large and established system integrators can handle minor projects with the efficiency you would expect and at a cost that might surprise you. Provided that they have the capacity ,this industry is, of course, one of either feast or famine ,they have excellent resources on tap in terms of design capability, production capacity and project management expertise. You will have the reassurance that the processes of quality management and health and safety compliance will be well-established routines, as well as having a team with vast experience at your disposal.
Centre of excellence
Of course, some system integrators will simply not be interested in jobs that are not of significant order value. This is not the case with KNAPP, however. There are a number of projects of small and medium complexity in the UK that KNAPP has delivered in recent years. The automated solutions supplied to Kuhne & Nagel and Amazon in the UK and Elgiganten, Post-Nord and Perstorp in Sweden are great examples, all of which are maintained by KNAPP’s Customer Service team. In fact, the KNAPP group has recently restructured precisely in order to help get this message about smaller systems across to the market. In addition to designing, installing and maintaining large projects, our new region ,the UK, Sweden, Norway and Finland , is continuing to market the product range of the former Moving Group. Based in Scandinavia but with global clients, Moving was acquired by KNAPP back in 2008 and its portfolio comprises a huge range of conveyor components and equipment for small systems. These smaller solutions are being sold not only by KNAPP subsidiaries worldwide but also via other system integrators. Our new region of UK, Sweden, Norway and Finland is now a ‘centre of excellence’ for smaller system projects that do not require control above PLC level. So, for us, no job is too small. www.knapp.com