Technology has transformed manufacturing businesses in recent years and has helped manufacturing companies across the world boom, marked by huge increases in jobs in the technology sector, especially in comparison to the lows seen in the early 2010s. How and why has technology had such an impact on manufacturing? Can other industries learn lessons from the benefits that tech has provided to the manufacturing sector?
We are now witnessing a major growth spurt in robotics across sectors. The deployment of robot technology can be seen widely: from restaurants that have found ways to get robots to deliver food, to companies like Amazon that have around 20,000 robots that work in fulfillment centers, alongside 50,000 human coworkers.
Putting robots into the workforce is a surefire way to save money in the long run, but due to the huge costs associated with building and installing robots, getting a full return on investment might take many years. Is that the case across the board? No. Look to the manufacturing sector, which has been using robotics for many years in the production of goods like automobiles.
Robotics is getting more affordable, so a wider selection of manufacturers should start integrating robotics into their production lines, starting from large companies and filtering down to independent SME manufacturers in a few years’ time. Even now, technologies like 3D printing are accessible to small businesses and offer efficiency close to larger robotic systems.
A manufacturing business today likely needs several effective pieces of software to help it manage its staff, robots, and niche systems. More and more software that can change specific manufacturers’ fortunes comes out on a monthly basis, and this is something that is going to continue to impact the industry majorly.
Specific software solutions help boost the efficiency of operations by improving the way you run your business. Technologies like manufacturing Process Simulation, supply chain management systems, and electronic parts API software are all examples of innovative ways that manufacturers boost their efficiency and are already being integrated as much as possible. Not only are they good for increasing production speed, but they can help to reduce errors and produce higher quality products.
The Internet of Things
The Internet of Things, or IoT as you will often see it written, is set to transform the manufacturing world (and has been for some years now). In its full force, it will allow many devices to communicate with each other, so you will see managerial staff having to do less and less to and fro between departments as machines do the organizational communication themselves.
Computers will be able to connect to 3D printers, which will be able to connect to conveyor belts and assembly machinery, allowing the assembly of a product to largely take care of itself. This will allow companies to get their costs right down. Expect this to be a huge growth area in the future. It is still in its nascent phase, but if you can find ways to implement IoT technology, you will likely be miles ahead of competitors when they finally get around to it.