Saturday, February 18, 2012

Conveyor Systems: Asking The Right Questions Before You Invest

When your business is ready to invest in a conveyor system in order to improve your company's efficiency and increase its material handling capabilities, it's imperative that you choose a solution that will work flawlessly with your product, locale and budget while offering improved service for your customers and improved ROI for your business. Asking the right questions when you're looking for conveyor systems can save you both time and money. The questions below are a great way narrow down your choices to a few of the best material handling systems providers, simplifying your decision.

Are They Well Established?

Regardless of how long a company has been in business, if it doesn't do work for any businesses you recognize, it may not be a good fit. Look for one that has a track record of providing excellent solutions in a variety of industries. Most will provide a list of past customers and some will even list the most recognizable names on their website to give potential clients an idea of their flexibility, scalability and reputation. If the systems integration company you're considering can't give you a list of satisfied past customers, you may want to move one.

Can They Provide Referrals From Satisfied Conveyor Systems Customers?

Again, you can usually check out each company's website for referrals or testimonials from satisfied customers. Read through several of these mini reviews; some may address specific concerns you have so that you can move forward with confidence. If you don't find any testimonials on their site, simply call and ask for a list of clients they've worked for. You can make a few phone calls and quickly find out whether those clients are satisfied with the quality of their conveyor systems.

Do They Have Partnerships With Internal And Outside Suppliers?
This is really a two part question. First, ask about their partnerships with their internal suppliers. Do they get their machine parts, conveyor belts and other materials from quality manufacturers, or are they cutting corners on quality? Second, find out what kinds of strategic partnerships they've established with outside suppliers who may be able to fulfill your company's other needs at a reduced cost.

Do They Offer Trouble-Shooting, Maintenance Or Follow-Up?

You should be able to work with the same project manager from the initial consultation about your material handling systems needs through the completion of the project and beyond. If your system goes offline or breaks down, your systems integration provider should offer customized service and support to get you up and running quickly. Preventative maintenance programs should also be an option; these can save you considerable time and money while ensuring that you'll always be able to provide your customers with timely product delivery. Finally, ask whether they have a twenty-four hour hotline or emergency help desk. Backing up their solutions with emergency response means they'll always be available when you need them.

Investigating this list of questions can save you time and trouble in the future. Be sure you know what to ask before investing in conveyor systems for your business.

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