One of the milestones that every business owner looks forward to is creating their very own production line and warehouse. If you’ve been outsourcing things like your production or warehouse storage, then you’ve probably wondered what it’s like to finally own your very own factory. However, as dreamy as it sounds, there are some harsh realities that you’re going to need to deal with in order to make the most of it. This article isn’t here to put you off owning a warehouse or a production line, but more to make you understand the responsibilities that you are going to be involved with and how you can ultimately overcome those challenges to make an efficient and productive factory. So without further ado, let’s dive into the realities of owning a warehouse and production line.
The cost is going to blow you away …
The cost of owning a factory is staggering. Without going into too many hard numbers (considering it can change depending on your location) let’s have a look at a few things you’ll need.
First, you have to actually rent or purchase a large plot of land that is capable of housing all the factory equipment and storage space that you’ll need. Imagine a gigantic plot of land with a simple steel construction housing loads of machines and you’ll get a general idea of how much land you need.
Next, you’ll want to renovate it and house it with all kinds of devices or safety measures. For example, if you’re going to create toys or other colourful products, then you’ll need powder coating chambers in order to give your creations some colour. However, this means you’ll need places to store the powder paint, you’ll need a booth that automatically exhausts hair to keep paint fumes from spreading around the factory, and you’re going to need a lot of extra equipment for your staff to wear in order to stay safe. This includes clothing, respiratory masks and even the right boots.
Speaking of staff, do you know how many people you’ll need to hire in order to get started? Not only do you require specialists such as contractors, foremen, researchers and engineers to get your factory started, you’ll also need to hire standard workers. Since there are so many varied roles that work in a factory, you can expect to hire hundreds or even thousands of employees for your factory. In addition to this, you’re also going to need to hire drivers to help with your logistics system. After all, how else are your raw materials going to reach the factory and how else will the finish products reach customers?
Afterwards, we’ll start to worry about insurance costs and other permits that are required to operate a factory. You’re going to need to insure your staff, your machines, your premises and also install a wide variety of security systems and cameras to make sure your employees aren’t breaking the rules and thieves aren’t breaking in.
And then finally, we have to worry about machines and other pieces of equipment. Everything from robotic arms that can be programmed to do just about anything, to Air Cargo Ball Decks that will make pushing around tonnes of finished products and raw materials easy, you’re going to need a lot of specialised equipment. In fact, most factory owners buy their machines second-hand and hire a knowledgeable engineer to help them refurbish the machine and repurpose it for their needs. Yes, hiring a specialist to fix and repair a machine is more time-efficient and cost-effective than simply buying a new machine—it’s that expensive.
It goes without saying that the cost of a factory is probably more than you’d think. There are a couple of other things you could add to make the cost of a factory look even more ridiculous, but most of it depends on the type of industry you’re involved with. Needless to say, the costs of owning a factory are incredibly high, and it’s going to take a lot of work and calculations to truly get an idea of how much money you could possibly save when you finally decide to start your very own production line.
… but do the advantages make up for it?
Now that we’ve got the cost out of the way (hopefully it wasn’t too scary) we need to think about what exactly it provides us. A production line is going to give you more control over your products, how they are formed, the materials you use and so on. In a sense, it’s a way of becoming a self-sufficient business that doesn’t need to outsource low-level things such as production. This can eventually save you a lot of money, but you need to be in business and constantly use your factory for several years or even a decade until it starts to pay off.
What this tells us is that if you plan to be in business for a long time and you’ve already seen some success, you could maybe take a loan out and construct your very own production line. However, if you’re a large business or smaller, then stick to outsourcing. It’s a little more expensive, but you’ll at least be able to control those costs. Outsourcing is the low-risk alternative to creating a factory, and only once you have an insane amount of capital should you even contemplate starting your own production line for your products.
However, with that being said, if you do manage to collect the capital required to invest in a production facility, then its uses aren’t limited to your own. During times when the production line isn’t in use, your engineers can repurpose to suit your needs. For instance, you could outsource your own factory to other businesses and help them create whatever they need. If you diversify your product line, then you’ll be able to produce new products as well with a little help of the engineers to modify the production process, reprogram all the machines and pump out something different.
So to end on a good note; while owning your very own production line can be incredibly costly, it’s also extremely useful and versatile. It’s a worthwhile investment if you’re seeing major success and have plans to diversify your business or its products in the near future.