In the past, businesses have focused on centralising production in one hub, but with advancements in technology and automation, that’s no longer the optimal choice for all businesses. Instead, a localised approach allows for greater flexibility and potentially lower costs. This is especially true when automation and/or micro-factories are involved.

Manufacturers who supply their products across the U.K. can benefit from localised manufacturing because it simplifies your distribution. Less transportation is needed, cutting the cost of logistics as well as your carbon footprint. You can get your products into the hands of your customers faster, cheaper, and in a more environmentally friendly way.

What is a micro-factory?

A micro-factory is a small square footage factory, designed to reduce the use of resources such as space, energy, and materials. Microfactories serving a distinct region can cut down on transportation costs and time. Overheads can be kept low by not having to bear the cost of large square footage factories, and staff and management costs are lower.

It allows for more efficiency, innovation, and lower overheads. Utilising a limited space to its full potential without compromising scalability means that automation is absolutely essential to make a micro-factory work.

Despite cutting costs, micro-factories and automation don’t necessarily mean fewer jobs. In fact, localised manufacturing and micro-factories mean more skilled jobs for local communities. While automation cuts out expensive unskilled manual labour and allows you to produce at scale, people are still needed to manage the machines and the service side of your business.

Who can benefit from micro-factories?

Micro-factories are a great idea, but they aren’t right for every business. Manufacturers of large items need more space to produce and store their products ready for distribution, and so a micro-factory isn’t always the best choice. For businesses like these, partnering with a manufacturing provider like Nexus is one solution. A partnership like this allows you to manufacture and store your items cost-effectively while you focus on growing your business, like Ojee Golf.

However, for manufacturers of small items and parts, a micro-factory is the ideal solution to scale at minimal cost. Industries like pharmaceuticals and medical devices are the perfect candidates for micro-factories. Their products are small, and the stringent quality regulations mean that automation is an ideal solution.

Innomech have helped numerous pharmaceutical and medical device clients to incorporate automation that improves quality and reduces costs. For a global biotechnology solutions provider, we helped them to create a medical device tester that was simple to use, met all regulatory requirements, and reduced the test cycle to just a few seconds.

Automation also allowed Capsugel to develop two systems for filling capsules and containers with precise dosages, maintaining precision levels of ~ 2% RSD at speeds of up to 600 capsules per hour.

These are just a handful of examples where automation has transformed medical device assembly and pharmaceutical manufacturing.  Find out how we can help you automate your pharmaceutical or medical device manufacturing today.