There is no doubt that collaborative robots have transformed the manufacturing industry. It is because they come loaded with numerous benefits. In any business, to beat competition and stay relevant, you have to embrace technology. If you get stuck in the past, then your business is left behind.
Automation is the new technology that has taken most industries by storm. It is the solution to many production problems. For instance, high costs of production, boredom at work, absenteeism, accidents at work place and lack of morale for workers. Also, since it’s easy to install and program, it is among the best options available. If you are a new business, cobots will equally work with you.
There is a misconception that automation is for only already established big businesses. That’s not true. Let no dodgy business men dupe you into buying any of the many industrial robots on sale. Do your due diligence on all the available options. Acquire robots that will help your business realize the following;
Achieve Manufacturing Flexibility
Manufacturing flexibility is very important especially in the food industry. There is an increasing demand for personalized food stuffs worldwide. This calls for manufacturers to meet the demand of personalized products and constantly fluctuating consumer demands. This can be achieved quickly using cobots. They are flexible and can be easily redeployed to perform different tasks. For instance the cobots being used by Orkla foods, a Swedish Manufacturer, have performed different functions hence increasing flexibility.
Provide a Safe Working Environment
Cobots were invented to work with humans in the same space. Therefore, they are made with safety features to lessen injuries at work place. Unlike robots that are caged or fenced, cobots work in open space with people. They have inbuilt sensors and monitors to detect humans and any other obstacle and hence prevent collision. For example, if a monitor detects a human around its working area, it will reduce its speed until it eventually stops. Also, since cobots take up complex and dangerous tasks, there is reduced chance of safety hazards among people.
Cobots are meant to work with as opposed to replacing people. This leads to increased productivity. They can work overtime without complaining or demanding for a pay rise. They don’t require supervision unlike humans. Cobots reduce human idle time that weighs heavily on any business. They are able to handle difficult tasks previously handled by people. Yet deliver consistently accurate results quickly. Automating the production chain increases output yet reduces labor costs. Therefore it leads to increased returns of investment.
Take up Mundane Tasks
Once cobots have been installed and programmed, they are ready to take up any task. Usually they are given difficult, dull, monotonous and dirty tasks. For instance in Europe, they are given the task of decorating cakes. They use the follow-the-line applications to do repetitive tasks. This gives humans the ability to take on more exciting tasks. Humans can also do jobs that require thinking, innovation and judgment or decision making. This increases productivity as employees are happy taking on exciting tasks.
An Example is a Swedish manufacturer, Orkla foods that employed cobots in their production line. The cobots were assigned the task of vanilla cream packing. Before the introduction of cobots, people were the ones packaging vanilla cream into cartons. But now that cobots took up this rather boring task, people were relieved to take on other tasks. This increased production and lowered costs. The company was able to realize their return on investment in only 6 months.
Cobots Fill Labor Gaps
In case of employee absenteeism, the cobot can perform the same task. You only have to reprogram it and give it another task. Also during peak times, cobots can be redeployed to at the busiest points to make more products. Cobots are the true definition of a loyal employee that is always present and taking on any given task without question. You don’t need to do interviews, trainings etc. just acquire it, and your job will be implemented well
Cobots are a necessity in the food industry. When you want to produce more to meet consumer demands, only cobots are your answer. They will help you produce more at low costs hence realize your return on investment faster. Food industry requires consistently good products to withstand competition. Automation will help you minimize human error and wastage.