Automation and Robotics for SMM’s

Innovation and forward thinking have long been key drivers to success. Without the vision, willingness, or ability to tackle change, any number of companies have seen stagnation negatively impact the bottom line. With advanced manufacturing technologies arriving at an exceptional pace, and with these improvements becoming more and more accessible to Small & Medium Manufacturers (SMM’s), it is important to look at how pursuing Automation and Robotics can improve profitability for this critical industry segment.

Reduction in Costs

When looking at the savings associated with implementing Automation and Robotics, it’s easy to focus on the straight-forward redeployment of workers to more value-added tasks. However, this narrow view doesn’t take into consideration other areas that factor into the hidden costs associated with human production. Robotics will eliminate mistakes and increase efficiency, leading to less product waste and higher output. They can also perform high-risk jobs, increasing the safety of workers and reducing the costs associated with workers compensation, insurance claims, and the hiring and training of temporary staff.  Looking at your potential applications with a keen eye to identify all benefits is important as the most successful applications have multiple benefits – redeployed labor and eliminating a worker fatigue concern, as an example.  Take the time to identify an impactful application.

Increase in Production

Robotics allow for around the clock production without the need for breaks, shift changes, or vacation. This allows for increased production with the existing workforce, helping improve on-time delivery while also allowing a company to seek out new customers. Even for low volume-high mix job shops, robotics can potentially build value for the organization by tackling different tasks based on workforce needs.  It also means that workers can be freed up from mundane tasks, improving morale and employee satisfaction.

Catalyst Connection is Here to Help

Considering the capital investment that is necessary for a SMM to implement Automation and Robotics, a company should have a thorough understanding before taking action. Through an initiative with ARM (Advanced Robotics for Manufacturing), an institute focused on addressing barriers to adoption of robotics in manufacturing through technology and workforce projects, Catalyst is connected with national robotics developments and networks. Catalyst is eager to support SMM’s in SWPA in exploration and adoption of robotics where it can add value to their business. Whether it is helping in a readiness assessment, or understanding how the reduction in costs and increase in production can lead to a faster ROI, Catalyst has the tools to help. And when the time is right to make the move to robotics, Catalyst offers invaluable implementation assistance, from workshops and trainings, to equipment selection, to Request for Proposal (RFP) process support.