Closer to our customers, even from remote: Norden new training center is open!
Norden Machinery is the world’s leading supplier of tube filling systems, operating in 80+ countries, with headquarters in Kalmar, Sweden. The company has invested in a new training center, where customers can receive training either at the academy or remotely.
“Working with a modern machine pool and utilizing the equipment’s to its full capacity and effectiveness is key in any manufacturing plant,” says Thomas Johansson, Managing Director.
Norden Machinery has now invested in a training center that can offer structured training to customer representatives. This will sharpen their knowledge of how to successfully operate their machinery.
“At Norden we strongly believe that this service has a lot to offer our customers. Not only does it teach technicians and operators how to operate the machinery in a safe manner, it creates connections between Norden and our partners. When purchasing a machine, it is a long- term investment that you look to get the most out of – a part of this is learning the ins and outs of the hardware and software” says Johansson.
Building on consolidated Norden knowledge
Oval racetrack, bottom-up filling, Hot-Air sealing, metal folding- or combination sealing beam, high-speed 3-color filling, Design-A-Seal®-welding, Servo-assisted machine functions, Robot tube loading. Yes, you have heard of the Norden innovations and the technologies surrounding tube filling technology, but how does it all work?
“As a company, Norden has always offered training to our customers, but we noticed that customers increasingly wanted a more formalized training scheme,” explains Robert Hermansson, manager of the training academy. “Now, the training is organized, with proper training facilities and materials, and Norden experts in the field who can explain the technical innovations from the ground up.”
Tube filling machines these days are more complex than ever, with a lot more advanced features, but they’re also much faster, which means even a small difference in the settings can make all the difference. Knowing how to use the machines in an optimal way, as well as having the competences to address production challenges, means limiting negative impacts on production lines: the more the customer knows about the machine, the easier it is to guide them when something goes wrong.
“We’ve seen over and over that customers who get extended training will have higher efficiency on their machines, with fewer breakdowns,” says Robert Hermansson. “And when they do have a breakdown and contact our first line support, they are up and running much quicker because they are speaking a common language with our technicians, who can go straight to the solution of the problem, skipping the basics.”
Norden has developed standard training packages based on customers need. Such packages are then customized on a case-by-case basis, so if a customer has Hot Air Sealing, Norden’s training will dive into this. If the customer’s operator does multiple format changes, that will be put into focus. The training is flexible in the sense that the customer will get the information and training that is relevant to their setup.
“When you have a high-speed machine that is supposed to produce 1000 tubes per minute, every minute counts,” explains Robert Hermansson. “If you are able to prevent a standstill from even occurring that’s great. If you can cut even thirty minutes off a standstill, that’s still a lot of production time that you’re saving. Waiting a day for a Norden technician to arrive means losing both time and money, so if you can do the repairs remotely or resolve the problem yourself, it’s the optimal solution. Norden training makes this possible.”
Training and safety go hand in hand
While training is important when it comes to complexity and speed of machines, safety is equally, if not more important. Any machine can potentially be dangerous if operated incorrectly, or if the operator isn’t aware of certain things, such as where there is pressurization or how door switches work. And of course, people get comfortable after operating the same machines over time, and might start to relax and not be as alert.
“It’s good to be reminded of what could be dangerous in the machine and what are the things you might face more often,” says Robert Hermansson. Training is also important when it comes to product safety for the end user. “If you don’t know how to handle the machine correctly or become too relaxed when operating it, something could happen to the product. This might have a disastrous outcome, particularly when dealing with pharmaceuticals. You want to make sure that your setup is always reliable and that you get the same outcome every time.”
While Norden has always offered training when new machines are delivered, the follow-up training has been somewhat ad hoc. Customer reaction to the new training center and program has been overwhelmingly positive.
“Our customers have been very pleasantly surprised by our new training packages, especially from Pharma companies,” says Robert Hermansson.
First-time customers, who might relatively new to Norden machines also find it very useful to have thorough training, because any investment in machinery is not taken lightly.
Investing in a new machine is something that is prepared for over a long period of time. ”For us, delivery is not where the process stops, it’s where it really begins,” says Robert Hermansson. “Having your staff properly trained means you will get return on your investment.”