Automated Verification Systems Boost Quality, Efficiency and the Bottom Line

In an increasingly competitive market, quality control is a critical aspect for manufacturers and packagers who want to keep their customers satisfied so they continue to return to their brand or business. To ensure quality control and maintain the high standards that encourage brand loyalty, manufacturers and packagers should consider the addition of a next-generation automated product and package verification system designed to accurately inspect products and packages, ensuring that all mispackaged items are rejected from the production line.

The Significance of Verification and Quality Control

Quality control is the act of verifying the quality of a product or package before it leaves the line and reaches the customer. Traditionally, line operators or quality technicians manually and visually inspected products and packages to determine whether they met pre-defined quality standards. Product and package verification usually falls within the realm of quality control and determines whether a product is assembled as it should be or whether a package contains the correct items and is properly labeled.

The verification process should detect and prevent mispackaged products from leaving the facility, eliminating the risk of product recalls due to incorrect packaging.

However, manually performing this task is time consuming and is neither accurate, as operators and technicians are likely to miss errors and defects due to boredom or the inadequacy of human vision, nor reliable or repeatable, as each employee will use their individual judgment to perform verification and quality control.

Automated Product and Package Verification Provides Benefits

Fortunately, a new generation of automated product and package verification systems exist and can help manufacturers and packagers conduct a more efficient, accurate, reliable and repeatable verification so they may consistently deliver high-quality products to the customer. Advantages of automating product and package verification include:

  • Eliminating Recalls due to packaging errors: Automated verification systems with control reliable design and fail-to-safe methodology will guarantee that any mislabled or incorrect packaged products will be removed from the production line and never reach the public.
  • Increased efficiency: When performed by employees, product and package verification and quality control inspections are very labor intensive and time consuming. They often create bottlenecks in the facility, which is likely expected to have high levels of throughput. Automated product and package verification systems are much faster, do not grow tired or require breaks or shift changes. These efficiency boosters allow manufacturers and packagers to meet or exceed throughput goals, while also getting defect-free products to customers in a more timely fashion.
  • Minimized costs: In addition to reducing the cost of hiring, training and retaining laborers, automating the product and package verification process can also cut costs associated with errors that result in returned products or rework, as well as costs associated with product recalls and shipment rejection or chargebacks. Minimizing both labor hours and the cost of returned products will likely have a significant and positive impact on the bottom line.
  • Enhanced brand reputation: Product and package verification is essential to maintaining a satisfied customer base. Ensuring that defects and faulty products are consistently and reliably detected and rejected from the production line increases the likelihood that the products and packages that reach customers will be of the highest quality possible, creating brand loyalty, as well as a good reputation for a manufacturer or packager among its customer base.

Using an Automated Product and Package Verification System

An automated product and package verification system employs cameras and sensors to capture images of products, packaging and labels during the manufacturing and/or packaging process. The system automatically analyzes the captured images and compares them to the product SKU that is supposed to be packaged and determines if the product is a match to the packaging or not. When the incorrect package is inspected and fails inspection, it is automatically removed from the line.

Users find that automated verification systems provide:

Flexibility: Because automated verification systems can be programmed to inspect various types of products and packages, they can be adapted to changing process needs or changing or updated specifications as required. They can also be relocated and integrated into other lines in the facility if there are expansions or new products in the future.

High accuracy: The combination of cameras, analytics and pre-programmed specifications provides higher levels of scrutiny than the human eye, allowing the automated verification system to pick up even the smallest and least-obvious defects.

Increased efficiency: Automated verification and quality control is done at such high speeds that it optimizes throughput and reduces labor costs, while also performing the job with more accuracy and consistency.

One of the newest systems available, the Control Reliable Inspection System, dubbed the CRIS System, from Sensors Integration, is a product and packaging verification system designed to handle the demands of inspecting round, touching and randomly oriented products. The CRIS uses Sensors Integration’s fail-to-safe inspection to ensure that every single component of the system is active and functional at all times. All products are assumed to be fails and rejected until positively verified to ensure safety and accuracy. Additionally, multiple cameras provide 360-degree product verification so that products and/or packages in any orientation will be correctly identified using barcode or pattern and then verified or rejected by the CRIS 360. The CRIS 360 can even inspect round and touching objects where barcodes and graphics are occluded by adjacent products.

To learn more about how automated product and packaging verification and inspection with the Sensors Integration’s Control Reliable Inspection System can help assure the quality of products or packages while also increasing efficiency, minimizing costs and boosting customer satisfaction, please contact Sensors Incorporated, A JHFOSTER company today.