When considering a multi-million dollar automated material handling system that may include voice and/or light directed batch order picking and sortation with a supporting warehouse management system, extensive operator and maintenance training including proper documentation is essential. Without it – you are flying blind. Yet, sometimes in competitive bidding situations this critical requirement can be offered as optional or as a scaled down 1 or 2 day event.
A proper training program will be tailored to your specific needs and customized to the exact equipment, controls, and software systems being provided and at a minimum include the following 3 stages:
First Stage – Maintenance Hands-On
In order to get familiar with the system components as well as their installation and location within the system, your maintenance staff needs to participate during actual installation of the system.
Second Stage – Formalized Training
The purpose here is to ensure that your maintenance and operational staff are acquainted with the functions and operation of the system. This training should enable your management and operating staff to maintain the operation of the system and at the same time carry out the necessary preventive maintenance and fault corrections provided with the system. It should include an overview of operation, component identification, functionality, as well as concentration on managerial statistics and their meaning.
Third Stage – System Audit and Refresher
About six months after system acceptance, the system provider(s) should perform a mechanical and controls audit to determine actual system performance criteria and to perform any required follow-up training and/or re-training.
At a minimum, you should receive “as-built” system layouts and design drawings, mechanical equipment bill of materials, recommended spare parts lists, schematic drawings, controls diagrams and electrical wiring information. Some system providers offer videos that provide step-by-step instructions.