Labeling Machine Quotations
Before spending on a capital piece of equipment like a label applicator, due diligence will usually require you obtain a number of quotations to compare; this is especially the case if you have not used label applicators before.
You want the best value piece of equipment that fits your budget to apply labels. This article seeks to assist you in logically prioritizing the quotes you have received and to help point out the key targets that must be satisfied.
1.0 Bottom Line – The Price
Here it is important to understand that the price and the cost of a machine are very different.
A very cheap labeling machine can cost far more than a medium priced machine if that machine causes significant line downtime with slow and difficult set-up procedures or unreliable mechanics and electronics that break down and need replacing. Imagine your line down for a day or a week with your staff still needing to be paid and your clients being let down with supply, not to mention your lost profits on your product.
A medium priced machine can cost more than an expensive machine if spare parts pricing is prohibitive or if machine service and back up is difficult because that machine does not have well thought out design features to facilitate fast over the phone fault finding or onsite swap out and replacement of parts.
2.0 Who really listened to you?
Looking at your quotation there will be some quotations that stand out because the people providing you with your quotation appear to have really “listened” to what you want rather than supplying a machine they want to supply you with template quotations. Quotations from people who listened are a good sign that you will be listened to in the future with after sales service and advice.
3.0 Were you dealing with a pawn or the king of the organisation?
Many machine sales people have little to no technical or management background so they will find it difficult to properly understand your requirements on these fronts. It is often far better to be dealing with some-one senior in a small to medium sized company who can assist in all facets of the machine supply from machine proposals to machine maintenance and operational advice. These key company people value long term client satisfaction and feedback far more than say a sales executive/manager in a large organisation.
4.0 Machine Service
A supplier boasting a big service team can indicate great after sales service but it can also indicate there is another self-funding business operating within that company. Spare parts are often a quick and easy way for machine suppliers to make fast money supplying parts you would find hard to source and charging out relatively low paid employees at top dollar rates. There is little incentive in such an organisation to solve your problems over the phone as they have a team that needs to charge out their time and needs to sell parts to make budget. A supplier of well-designed labeling machine like the LabelOn™ modular should be able to advise that well over 95% of machine problems can be sorted out over the phone and possibly with the courier of parts.
Machines that rely on service technicians to be available for a visit to sort out a problem can indicate machinery is not that well designed for intuitive fault finding and repair, machine records are not available for the client or a high maintenance budget is inevitable.