Smart Rollforming Get into shape with Formia! Smart Sorting For Postal Functionality! Contacts

Formia has been developing smart postal handling with Finland’s Itella for decades

Functional and ergonomic sorting equipment

Communication using beacons, fiery crosses and the post-house system run by Finnish peasants in the 17th century are but a memory in today's mail environment. The development of mail handling methods, systems and equipment has been systematic. The digital revolution has resulted in challenges for the industry, and reliability, efficiency, cost-savings and sustainable operations are today's operating criteria in the mail sector, not forgetting ergonomics.

The mail has used sorting frames ever since mail volumes no longer fit on to tables. Formia has been Itella Corporation's (formerly the Finland Post Corporation) partner in developing and manufacturing state-of-the-art sorting frames ever since the beginning of the 1970s, when the production of the first metal sorting frames began. The frames have been subject to continuous development to match the needs of increasingly effective sorting methods. Thanks to the development version of the "alphabetic sorting frame" used since the late 1990s, the need for floor space in mail centers has decreased to a third of what it was before. Particular attention has been paid to ergonomics and well-being at work in recent years and, for example, frame sizes have been decreased to reduce twisting and sideways movement, shelf angles have been optimized and user-friendly hydraulic adjustments have been implemented. Formia's frame solutions have traditionally been based on horizontal sorting, which decreases strain on the wrist in particular. In fact, significant cost-savings have been achieved by cutting sick leave among sorters by half, with fewer musculoskeletal diseases. The next challenge in reaching for cost-savings will be flexible and cost-efficient management of address changes in sorting frames. 

Effectiveness and functionality through close cooperation

The increasing amount of automated functions is obvious in today's mail sector. Formia has been a significant part supplier in the latest major investment in Itella's mail sorting; the project made the sorting of maxi letters, newspaper and magazine bundles and packages more efficient in four mail centers in Finland. Formia's automatic and manual sorting chutes with accessories and structures were a part of a more extensive delivery system of mail sorting systems by Siemens.

"Thanks to Formia's extensive project and manufacturing proficiency, the delivery got off to a quick start and we were able to keep up with the tight delivery schedule with the help of modern 3D design and efficient LEAN sheet metal production. The structures, designed in close cooperation with Siemens and meticulously pre-tested, have been found to be functional, and they have resulted in a clear acceleration of mail handling and improved quality and work ergonomics in line with the original goal," reports Jari Jokitöyrä, Project Manager, Siemens Osakeyhtiö.

Formia has delivered sorting chutes to Itella before, and a special delivery solution for large delivery lots was developed for these deliveries, enabling cost-efficient transport of complex structures even to more remote delivery destinations. 

Durable and environmentally friendly

Formia specializes in metal-based solutions that are durable, resistant to wear and environmentally friendly. Metal is the most recycled raw material in the world, and Formia's products and equipment are powder coated without hazardous process waste or VOC solvent releases with adverse climate effects. Sustainability is an important principle in Formia’s operations.

"Mail sorting systems are one of Formia's strategic key areas, and we aim to develop our operations to deliver increasingly extensive and smart systems in the mail sector. Our extensive experience in realizing demanding intralogistics solutions for different branches of industry combined with our understanding of mail processes lays a solid foundation for our operations," explains Mika Illi, Vice President, Intralogistics Solutions.