First time users of robotic automation systems need to prepare their business for the many operational changes that occur once industrial robots are installed on the factory floor. Without a proper plan in place to leverage the full benefits of industrial robots, the productivity benefits of these systems will be limited, not only holding back current operations but discouraging future investments in automation.
Preparing for the integration of robots is key and it can also help streamline the integration process itself. To get the most out of industrial robots, there are a few things that manufacturers should do to prepare.
3 Ways to Prepare for the Benefits of Robotic Automation
For manufacturers automating for the first time, there are three fundamental ways to maximize the impact of industrial robots.
Plan for Higher Levels of Training
The introduction of new automation technology calls for new types of expertise on the shop floor. This expertise may be hired or existing employees may be trained in new roles. Manual welders make great robot operators for robotic welding systems. A new need for training on an ongoing basis to keep robotic productivity at its peak is required. Manufacturers need to understand and plan for the training required to get the most productivity out of industrial robots over their entire lifespan.
Understand Short-Term and Long-Term Budgets
An investment in robotic automation doesn’t haven’t to transform the entire production process at once. In the short-term, it’s possible only one process will require automation. The return on investment (ROI) from one type of automation can justify the continued investment in other types of automation, allowing a manufacturer to automate their production piece by piece without a massive investment in new equipment.
Know How Robotic Automation Will Affect Existing Processes
Before an industrial robot is installed, it’s critically important to know how it will affect existing processes. Robots can significantly ramp up throughput. If downstream processes can’t handle this throughput, the benefits of automation will be limited. If upstream processes can’t deliver at a fast enough pace to keep up with the throughput of robots, the result will be the same. It’s important to know exactly how industrial robots will be limited or enabled by existing processes.
For first time users of robotic automation, there are a number of things that should be done before a robot is ever installed. By preparing for all the benefits of robotic automation, manufacturers can unlock the full productivity potential of industrial robots for their operations.
To learn more on this topic, read about robotic integration services from Genesis Systems, an IPG Photonics Company.