3 Things To Keep In Mind When Working With CNC Machines During COVID

There’s no doubt that Australia has been plunged into unfamiliar territory over the past 22 months. Supply chain disruptions, labour shortages and a constant pile-up of backorders have thrown local industry into disarray as firms struggled to balance safety with productivity – but there is an upside to the melee.

Recent events are shining a light on what wasn’t working pre-pandemic, and presenting opportunities for an overhaul. With the help of the Australian Government’s stimulus packages, we’re seeing a huge number of firms investing in advanced technology and thus laying down the foundations for continued success. All through lockdowns, we’ve been working hard to ensure that equipment, tooling, and spare parts are available for all, ready for the long-awaited reopening of VIC, NSW, and the ACT.

There have been challenges along the way, but our team is very excited to be doing our part in keeping local businesses going. While some things are out of our control, there are a few steps that you can take to help acquisitions, orders, and general operations go smoothly. Factor them into day-to-day decision-making and you’ll dodge more than a few unnecessary headaches and hiccups!

Invest in automation

If we’ve learned anything since March last year, it’s that relying on manpower can be costly. Firms leaning on labour-intensive processes took the biggest hit during lockdowns, copping losses due to COVID-19 regulations.

Advanced manufacturing hasn’t totally eliminated the need for hands-on processes, but it has minimised the amount of people needed on-site. The more automated the CNC, the fewer people required to operate it. And the easier it is to avoid negative effects from regulatory measures. 

High-tech CNC machines like CMS’ are transforming vulnerable facilities into more COVID-resilient businesses as we speak. Armed with sophisticated, reliable mechatronics, these machines are fully capable of loading, unloading, and producing parts that require very little finishing. In other words, you only need a skeleton crew on-site. As many of our clients have seen, it’s well worth the investment – and there are still Government stimulus packages available to help you out.

Maximise manpower with minimal resources

Hiring great labourers was difficult in the past, but it became an even more serious challenge during COVID. A mix of increased unemployment pay, lack of migrant workers and poaching of staff from other industries has led to increasing labour costs and outright struggle to find manpower. Even finding unskilled workers willing to be trained up is proving to be near impossible. 

Rather than waiting months in order to find the right candidate, some of our clients chose to diversify existing staff members’ skill sets through our online training service. Think along the lines of training an installer how to operate the CNC that they just installed. 

This clever move enabled forward-thinking firms to keep machines going even when staff members were away, making full use of assets. It’s worked out so well for our clients that we’re recommending this strategy for most businesses. Get in touch with our team if you’re interested in finding out more!

Order machines and essential CNC components ahead of time

Globally, bottlenecks in supply and demand are creating problems like we’ve never seen before. Unsurprisingly, the sharp change has put pressure on suppliers and distributors, who are struggling to keep up. As a result, orders for new equipment are taking longer to make and ship out; with flow-on effects on pricing. 

“I’m now having to book containers a month in advance, and paying twice the price”, says Pierre, our MD.

Considering that shipping rates have seen a massive 300% increase since March 2020, paying double to transport 12-tonne machines doesn’t seem like a bad deal. While other stock is trailing months behind schedule, we’re getting CNCs, spare parts, and accessories regularly and reliably. Cutting essentials like Glass and Stone tooling are already on shore, ready to be dispatched when you need them most. All you have to do is let us know what you need (preferably ahead of time), and we’ll send it out ASAP. 

If you’re thinking of upgrading, we highly recommend hearing what our experts have to say on the matter. With their guidance and insights, finding a tailored solution that’s right for you isn’t just efficient – it’s essential for growth in the here and now. 

All consultations are obligation-free, so you’ve got nothing to lose. Get in touch now and see what our techsperts can do for you.