Schleich USA Boosts Production by Upgrading Its Packaging System
As a top-tier manufacturing company, Schleich USA is always looking for new ways to improve its operations.
Learn how Schleich was able to increase efficiency by finding the right partner to help them implement the equipment they required to take their packaging processes to the next level.
Uncovering Opportunities for Optimization
Schleich is the global leader and manufacturer of realistic toy figurines and playsets. Founded in 1935, their premium detailed toys “span six play worlds and are designed to tickle the imaginations of children around the world, inspiring countless stories and adventures.”
Since its founding, Schleich has grown into a worldwide brand, with business operations around the globe, including a production facility in Charlotte, North Carolina.
The operation team at that location saw an opportunity to increase throughput by expanding and reconfiguring their material handling system, consisting of gravity conveyors used to move boxes on wheels or rollers.
They began by moving their original conveyors into different positions to gain more floor space. The new configuration gave them space to consider implementing new wider conveyors which could accommodate larger boxes. They also discovered they need some additional expertise who could help them develop, implement, and test the upgraded system to make sure it operated at peak performance.
Finding the Right Packaging Partner
The project started utilizing Schleich’s former material handling supplier, but its initial attempt at implementing new gravity conveyors failed to meet their needs.
The original conveyors recommended by the supplier didn’t match Schleich’s requirements and couldn’t support a high volume of boxes down the line without hang-ups and issues. This resulted in a significant decrease in the facilities’ daily output.
Plus, there was the issue of cost. The material handling supplier informed them that the configuration problems could be addressed but at twice the budgeted expense.
The Schleich operations group decided it was worth investigating other companies that might be able to do the job faster and more cost-effectively.
Another one of their vendors recommended Crown Packaging Corp., a top supplier of comprehensive industrial packaging solutions supporting companies across North America. Crown Packaging’s reputation for excellent customer service, on-site support, and equipment expertise made them the perfect partner for the job.
Crown Packaging developed a turnkey solution for Schleich, bundling the conveyance equipment, installation, and support.
Jeremy Maxin, Branch Manager for Crown Packaging’s Charlotte office shared: “There was great collaboration with the Schleich team on their material handling project. They had a vision for what they wanted to accomplish and just needed some additional help to make it a reality. I knew we could connect them with the right people and equipment to meet their goals.”
Making Packaging Systems Implementation Painless
The packaging specialists at Crown put together a plan and assembled the resources needed to get the new system up and live as quickly as possible.
They worked with the Schleich team to assess their needs and determine the best equipment for their application, which included 160 feet of gravity conveyors and conveyor guards.
To prevent any of the issues Schleich experienced with the first attempt at implementation, Crown Packaging leveraged their on-staff packaging equipment experts as well as recruiting additional 3rd party equipment specialists to make sure the system worked to Schleich’s specifications.
Ben O’Morrow, the Crown Packaging specialist who worked with Schleich on this initiative said, “It takes an entire team to make a project like this go smoothly, and we made sure that Schleich had the support they needed.”
Once the equipment and staff were assembled, finding the best time for the rollout was the next challenge to overcome. It was critical to minimize the impact on production during the equipment installation.
Crown Packaging opted to do a full teardown and implementation over a weekend, allowing Schleich to completely avoid downtime and keep their business running without disruption.
Better Packaging Systems Produce Better Results
With the new system in place, the positive impact on productivity at Schleich’s Charlotte factory was immediate.
With the help of Crown Packaging, Schleich has increased efficiency, prevented issues with box jams, and accelerated production.
The success at the Charlotte location has been recognized across the company, including by corporate leadership. The Chief Operating Officer at Schleich’s global headquarters, complemented the team and remarked about the great efficiency gain that the system upgrade will provide.
In addition to the productivity boost, Crown Packaging was also able to help cut costs.
Even with the enhanced level of support, Crown Packaging was able to provide equipment, quickly install it, and optimize the system for less than the purchase of the conveyors with their previous company. This allowed Schleich to keep material handling equipment expenses lows so they can invest those funds in other areas of the business like their growing e-commerce line.
Planning for Future Growth and Further Improvement
Following the success of the conveyance upgrade initiative, Schleich is planning additional projects with Crown Packaging, including more systems optimization. Crown is developing an automated solution with case erectors and sealers to maximize the efficiency of Schleich’s main production line.
According to one of Schleich’s operations leads, “The team and I are very pleased. I can’t wait to get started on the next project with Crown!”
Another benefit of working with Crown Packaging is the wide range of services they offer. Along with delivering packaging equipment and installation services, Crown Packaging provides packaging supplies, inventory management, custom corrugated design, maintenance, tech tools, and much more. This gives companies like Schleich the ability to improve through their packaging operation in additional ways through one vendor.
“We pride ourselves on our ability to offer our customers complete packaging solutions,” said Crown’s Jeremy Maxin. “We want them to think of us as their go-to partner in packaging, and we’re proud to partner with Schleich to help them improve their business.”
About Schleich USA
Schleich is the global leader and manufacturer of realistic toy figurines and playsets. Founded in 1935, our premium detailed toys span six play worlds and are designed to tickle the imaginations of children around the world, inspiring countless stories and adventures.