The idea of robots in the workplace was once a pipe dream, but more and more businesses are trusting machines and computers to handle operational tasks. And one thing is certain, the use of technology tends to progress rather than regress, so robots and artificial intelligence are here to stay.
Many small and large businesses are relying more on automated systems to give their business a leg up against the competition. Depending on the industry you’re in and the size of your company, your business may just be ready for automation as well. Continue reading to learn some things you should consider before automating your facility.
Few people actually fear artificial intelligence and automation and those people are production workers, and for good reasons. For decades, machines have been replacing people in certain manufacturing roles. No matter how advanced your facilities are though, you will still need human employees to make your business run at its optimal potential. Before you make the decision to automate your business, you need to consider how it will impact your employees.
In spite of the fear that many people have of losing their job to robots, these intelligent machines are actually a great aid to factory workers. For instance, Fanuc America manufactures the cobot, which is their line of collaborative robots. Their robots help rather than replace humans in manufacturing plants, so your employees can remain at ease knowing their jobs are secure.
No matter what kind of machines you install in your factory, you need to take care of the people who take care of your business. When your company takes off, you don’t want it to leave behind the people who helped make your company a sensation.
How much will it cost?
When it comes to making upgrades of any type to your business, one of the main things that you have to take into consideration is cost. While it may be cheaper, in the long run, to use machines for your manufacturing or other industrial needs, you still have to deal with the cost of machinery.
Usually, when a company starts considering automating their facilities, they’re thinking of ways to cut costs, but any machines you purchase will have a high price tag on them. Just because you can afford to automate your operations, doesn’t mean you should.
The first thing you need to think about when considering automating your business is whether or not it will be worth the cost. If the demand for your products is greater than your production, then you may want to consider adding machines that can help increase your production.
You also need to shop around so you can find the right machinery at the best possible cost. Some machines, like plasma cutters, are pretty rare and will be expensive no matter who you purchase them from. When it comes to specialized machinery like plasma cutting systems, you need to do your homework on the manufacturer to make sure that you’re getting a good value for your investment.
Each business is unique and so are the solutions that different businesses need. When you start thinking of ways to automate your facilities, then you need to analyze which areas of production could use the most help.
For instance, if your production is slow because of the time it takes to move materials from one end of your facility to another, then that’s an area where automation can help. Industrial conveyors are capable of transporting thousands of pounds of material much quicker and more efficiently than humans can. With conveyors, you can set up assembly lines in your facilities and streamline some aspects of production.
When you install new machinery in your facility, you’re going to have to either drastically slow or completely shut off production. During the installation process, you’re going to lose money by paying to install the equipment and the lack of production during the installation process.
Before you begin the automation process, you need to know how long it will take to install the machines and how that will affect your bottom line. You’ll probably have to lessen your workforce for safety reasons and to prevent paying your employees to stand idle while there’s little or no work for them to complete.