Automating Cutting Tool Inventory Management With Industrial Vending Machines

While we've embraced digital transformation as a way to improve our productivity and quality, digital systems can only take you so far in a machine shop. At the end of the day, we also need to focus on physical systems that help us become more efficient. For instance, how do we make sure we always have the right cutting tools and manufacturing aids in the right place at the right time?

To help us in that process, we've recently installed an inventory management and reordering system that bridges the gap between the digital and physical, ensuring we always have the tools we need — when and where we need them — when it comes time to actually cut the metal.

Introducing FASTVend Industrial Vending Machines

Called FASTVend, this Fastenal system takes a creative, yet effective approach to managing our inventory of cutting tools and other consumables. As an industrial vending machine, it tracks inventory levels, predicts demand and automates replenishment. This approach is particularly beneficial for CNC operations, where the availability of our cutting tools can impact machining schedules and overall productivity.

By automatically maintaining inventory levels, FASTVend unlocks many benefits. It minimizes downtime related to the unavailability of necessary cutting tools. It also reduces the carrying costs associated with excess inventory and enables CNC operators to focus on production, rather than inventory management, leading to higher throughput.

Managing Our Manufacturing Aids

These improvements to our inventory management aren't just for our cutting tools. We've also installed Fastener vending lockers to manage our own manufacturing aids, including jigs and fixtures. These lockers operate in the same way as FASTVend, automating the inventory management and replenishment process.

These new systems focus on inventory management so that we don't have to. Instead, we can concentrate on what really matters — machining the highest-quality parts to meet even your toughest application requirements.

To learn more, contact us today.

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