How to Overcome Manufacturing Challenges in a Changing World Through Creative and Collaborative Approaches to Automation
In recent years, the manufacturing industry has been hit with manufacturing challenges on a scale never seen before. The global economy is fragile and production facilities have felt the impact of the recent downturn by losing the demand, the supply chain, and the workforce they need.
This resilient industry will rise to meet the challenge. The companies and the people that make up this sector will find creative and collaborative ways to meet the manufacturing challenges. Some changes will be temporary. Some will be permanent. What can your company do to adapt?
Be Able to Quickly Adjust Your Manufacturing Processes
Companies that have been able to quickly change their processes to accommodate new requirements have been able to keep their doors open. Many found that their investment in robust automation technologies paid off. Process flexibility allowed them to stop shipping nonessential products and start producing necessary components.
Training a workforce on a new process can take weeks or months. Programming a fleet of automation equipment can shorten lead time drastically. A robot is programmed, its instructions can be deployed to the rest of the machines with minor touch-ups.
Run a Lean Facility and Eliminate Your Supply Chain Bottlenecks
With the issues presented getting products shipped across borders or even within a country, manufacturers have discovered that the supply chain is as critical to their business as the production itself. If goods are left waiting to be packed onto pallets or unable to load trucks or shipping containers, the production line is at a standstill.
Vertical integration with robotic solutions has helped manufacturers get their products out the door and on their way to consumers. As manufacturers have been challenged to find workers to man the assembly line and get them up to speed, those with automation solutions have been able to build products, pack boxes with the product, and roll pallets right into the carrier’s possession.
Create a Safe Environment with Proven Sanitation Methods
Expect new regulations and manufacturing practices aimed at keeping both consumers and employees safe. Manufacturers need to be more conscious than ever about possible threats in their facilities. Automation solutions can remove the possibility of contamination when it comes to production, cleanliness, and labor.
Robots transporting goods throughout the factory can be scrubbed and sanitized regularly throughout the day. Robots can also be used in ways that keep humans free of unnecessary person-to-person contact.
You may also be interested in reading: Predicting the Future of Industrial Robotics in 2020 and Beyond.