Lifecycle Service Support
The recent emergence and rapid growth of modular robotic technology such as AMR’s, AGV’s, and more has been an exciting revelation for the global supply chain, and this growth is owed to three inherent ideologies centered at the core of this technology and its uses:
- • Scalability
- • Flexibility
- • Sustainability
Along with seemingly boundless applications for use of these robots, there are underlying complexities to the successful implementation of a modular robotics solution: How many robots are needed? How can the addition of new robots be best managed based on need? Perhaps most perplexing is how to operate and maintain the robotics solutions after they are implemented?
These are simple questions that are often met with complex realities. While different industries, customers, and needs can make it difficult to engineer a universal solution, Tompkins Robotics believes that a simple question can be met with a simple answer.
While many of the questions our customers ask are focused on the CAPEX side of the equation, of which our tSort solution provides many advantages, our tSort solution also offers many inherent OPEX advantages when compared to traditional conveyance, such as:
- • No real single point of failure: When using traditional conveyor, if a component such as a motor fails, or a belt tears, etc., the system may need to be shut down for an extended period of time to conduct repairs, causing a halt to production and operations as opposed to tSort; if a robot fails to operate properly, it can be removed without any interruption to service with no ceasing of operations.
- • No need for advanced technical controls experience: Since there are limited to no PLC’s as part of the system, an experienced technician with controls knowledge is not needed to support the tSort system, whereas many traditional conveyors require high-level and low-level controls experience, thus increasing the overall employee labor price on site.
- • Design concept is compact and easily accessible: Due to the simplicity of design, one technician can complete all preventative maintenance and corrective maintenance with out the need of another technician to assist. When working on normal conveyor, OSHA rules and regulations require two technicians to carry out repairs, which may take their attention away from their other duties and technical obligations.
- • Spare Parts Inventory: The tSort system is comprised of fewer parts than a traditional conveyor, requiring less parts to be on hand in inventory, reducing your financial commitment in purchasing spares.
Tompkins Robotics has produced an exciting and innovative value-proposition to address the elusive concept of sustainability. Tompkins Robotics Life Cycle Services Program is a value-based solution, developed with the vision of including costs, calculations, proposals, and pricing for a full-suite of service and support programs to address:
- • Preventive Maintenance
- • Corrective Maintenance
- • Spare Parts Management
- • Hotline and Service Call Out Support
- • Technical Training
We strive to add value at every stage of the process by constantly advancing the performance of our life-cycle services activities. This gives you the peace of mind to know that your system is always working optimally with the benefits of continued reliability, availability, and performance.
To this end, Tompkins has developed a structured approach designed to scale with the individual solutions tailored to customers as opposed to relying on a single service model. While the services provided will remain the same, the cost, labor, and service focus will scale with the needs of the customer ensuring that every service arrangement is meeting the customers’ needs and budget.
In the event a customer prefers to have Tompkins provide the maintenance activities onsite in lieu of their own maintenance team, our Life Cycle Services team can also create a program that focuses on your tSort system to deliver certainty in technical performance. Our maintenance program is intended to support the maintenance of the tSort system to allow the customer to focus primarily on other equipment throughout the facility.
Tompkins Robotics Lifecycle Roadmap
• Foundations: Technical and Preventative Maintenance
For a modular robotics solution to achieve the intended effects of adding scalability, flexibility, and sustainability to a client’s business, there must also be a strategy to repair, modify, and modernize the robots to continue meeting customer demand. Tompkins offers a robust approach to technical and preventative maintenance that focuses on proactive and seamless integration with the solution regardless of size.
• Focus on Flexibility
Tompkins supplies modular robotic solutions to a variety of clients, and in order to satisfy this diverse client base, an equally diverse approach to service solutions is also required. Tompkins invests in the idea of skilled technical labor, and endeavors to enrich the existing skillsets of maintenance technicians to ensure they are proactive in their knowledge of repairing and maintaining the robots. Where possible, we also invest in practical efficiencies such as cross-training personnel as a means of strengthening the available maintenance technician pool and standardized inspection protocols to simplify the process by which technical problems are diagnosed and solved.
• Repair Program
Tompkins Robotics Lifecycle Service Roadmap identifies and resolves technical issues before they present a cost impact to a customer’s business. As the needs of a customer’s business changes, so too does their level of automation and, by extension, the level of service support necessary to maintain the system through its lifecycle. When there is a technical or operational problem identified, Tompkins integrates support systems such as Emergency Dispatch, 24/7 hotline service, and remote diagnosis to quickly identify the problem and send a technician(s) to resolve the issue as soon as possible.
• Startup Service
Integrating a modular robotics system can appear to be a complex assignment for any company exploring the potential of automation. Tompkins Robotics understands that change, and in particular, evolving to a new technology gives rise to anxiety in our customers. In order to make the period of operational start-up easier for the customer, Tompkins ensures that the field operations teams are fully equipped to provide full-suite startup services at each site. This includes custom teams of technicians whose flexibility to service the robots, specialized support software that allows complete oversight for the maintenance teams to diagnose and solve problems rapidly, as well as customizing inspection plans to the customer’s business needs based on individual factors such as throughput, product type, sort destinations and number of destinations.
• Spare Parts Management
Embracing automated solutions such as modular robotics can provide incredible benefits to a business. There are times, however, when the use of automation technology can encounter technical challenges preventing it from operating within expected parameters. To combat the uncertainty of technical faults in a fast-paced environment, Tompkins supplies custom-designed spare parts support packages for its systems and provide replacement parts for any part of the tSort robots and system. These parts are inventoried in our headquarters where we can replenish rapidly and provide competitive pricing to our customers. Combined with our expedient response programs and skilled maintenance groups, there is no technical, mechanical, or software-based problem that we can’t resolve. Additionally, we are able to provide parts auditing services to ensure your local inventory is complete and supply the necessary parts to restore and restock.
Tompkins Robotics provides operational and maintenance training for customers to achieve the maximum benefit of their AMR investment. Training encompasses, but is not limited to:
- • Health and Safety
- • Robot Operational Utilization
- • Operator Training
- • Software Training
- • Maintenance Training and Support
- • Full system training provided prior to go-live for all systems
Additional training can be made available when customers add new staffing or to address employee turnover.
• Hotline 24/7 Support
Tompkins Robotics’ support team is available 24/7 to meet our customers’ support requirements via our remote hotline. In the event your system requires remote diagnostics and engineering support, our engineers may be accessed remotely to quickly assess your system and take the steps necessary to restore your operation in real-time. If required, emergency dispatching of technical resources is implemented to resolve issues, where the situation cannot be resolved remotely.