Manufacturer Uses FastPic Inventory Software to Reclaim Floor Space and Manage Inventory Efficiently

Mark Andy, a leading manufacturer of narrow web printing equipment for the label and packaging markets, is contuinually changing their product mix to keep up with the marketplace. By incorporating FastPic® inventory management software and three KardexRemstar Shuttle® Vertical Lift Modules (VLMs) into their existing manufacturing process, Mark Andy is now able to efficiently manage their inventory while increasing their product capacity, and in addition, freed up valuable floor space to add an additional assembly area.

The company builds presses by constructing a series of sub-assembly modules that are connected together to create a completed press. They performed a justification analysis and determined that economically, the best approach would be to use FastPic inventory management and control software with Shuttle VLMs.

By installing the FastPic inventory software and Shuttle VLMs, Mark Andy now manages their parts inventory more efficiently. "We are now able to consolidate and move more parts out to our module areas to support those operations," Wolf said. "The FastPic software lets us track low usage parts, and parts with zero on hand and no usage. That is information we didn't have in the past, and having it now allows us to more creatively and effectively manage our manufacturing operations."

Making It Work

With the FastPic software, the system can manage and control inventory while processing transactions in real time. All three Shuttle VLMs at Mark Andy are linked together as one workzone, and parts for a particular module are stored throughout the three individual units to improve overall storage efficiency." When additional parts are needed, an operator selects the order to process in the FastPic software that has been downloaded from our ERP system and the Shuttle VLMs automatically start to move." Once an order is processed, the seamless integration with the software allows all three units to begin retrieving the required parts simultaneously. After an item is picked, the next item is being delivered to the access window in the VLM and is waiting to be retrieved. Using the FastPic software Mark Andy was able to achieve complete inventory control and increased levels of productivity.

Mark Andy also has two KardexRemstar horizontal carousels to serve as the central distribution point to supply the machine shop and welding workzones. Both the VLM's and the horizontal carousels are controlled by FastPic software and are interfaced with the company's ERP system. "When our planners create a job that requires parts from the VLM or horizontal carousels, the ERP system automatically sends that inventory list to the FastPic software. The operator selects the job from a list of orders in the FastPic software and it activates the horizontal carousels or VLMs to retrieve the parts required. The FastPic software then sends all the transaction information back to the ERP system, processing transactions real time." Wolf said.

"The FastPic software along with the Shuttle VLMs allowed us to free up approximately 1,600 square feet of floor space to use for production, rather than storage," said manufacturing engineer John Wolf. "We found that using the FastPic software and the tray dividers in the Shuttle VLM trays we significantly increased the storage density and exceeded our 40% objective." The added capacity allowed Mark Andy to increase the inventory level of parts for the module assembly operation stored in the Shuttle VLMs.

FastPic Systems, a company of the Kardex AG of Zurich, Switzerland Group, is a leading developer of software for automated storage and retrieval system operation. The KRI Group is a manufacturer and integrator of a broad range of AS/RS technologies including vertical lift modules (VLMs), vertical and horizontal carousels. For more information about FastPic5 software, call 207-854-8663 or visit the FastPic Systems web site at

Contact Information:
Doug Card,
Director of Software
Telephone: 207-591-3170

FastPic Systems
Inventory Management Software Systems
41 Eisenhower Drive
Westbrook, ME 04092
Tel 800-897-8379
Fax 207-854-1610
A Member of the Kardex Group

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