The impact of technology on modern labor is depicted in a negative light in the headlines. Many individuals believe that industrial robots and automation will be bad for blue-collar workers.
Is it, however, well-founded, or has the bad hype been exaggerated?
In my opinion, modern technology does not pose a significant danger to today’s workforce, based on my experience in retail technology and developing creative solutions. On the other hand, human workers could profit from robots in a variety of unexpected ways. However, I believe that reaping the benefits of automation and robotics will necessitate specific changes in how we approach work.
Robotics Have the Potential to Boost Overall Productivity
When robots and automation are correctly applied in a firm, they do not eliminate jobs. They supplement them to boost productivity. According to certain studies, robots are driving the creation of new work positions. The distinction between these positions is the skill set required. And, because they need a higher degree of ability, the jobs they provide have the potential to pay more. However, certain workers who lack the necessary credentials for these higher-skilled occupations will face a hurdle due to this transition in the sector. Still, numerous companies have taken steps to address this. Amazon, L’Oreal, and Adobe are among the companies that have chosen to invest in their employees’ education to enhance their talents.
Contrary to popular perception, the future will not be entirely mechanized. Instead, we’re more likely to enter a future in which humans coexist with robots. Only about 10% of professions, according to the International Federation of Robotics, can be automated. Robots are not replacing jobs. They’re merely automating monotonous tasks that were part of specific jobs, allowing humans to focus on more vital, dynamic work.
The ability to devote more time to higher-level jobs isn’t the only advantage of implementing automation. Robotics boost small-to-medium-sized businesses (SMBs) by increasing efficiency, which helps level the playing field between them and their larger competitors.
Humans shouldn’t have to (or don’t want to) do jobs that robots can do.
Before we get too worked up about robots stealing employment, we should remember how many duties they perform that assist humans. Consider individuals who are required to work in a toxic or dangerous workplace. Removing human workers from hazardous-materials warehouses or professions that require severe heavy lifting and allowing them to focus on more complicated duties could be a win-win situation for all parties.
Aside from the risky occupations that robots could perform, there are also roles that many people would rather avoid. It might be difficult for specific organizations to fill these roles focused on routine duties, such as inventory counts. Automation could benefit industries like supply chain and retail the most, allowing them to keep up with rising demand while also ensuring the safety of their workers. Using robots to fill these unfilled positions can save time and money for a company, which could be better spent on educating employees for higher-skilled occupations.
We should also think about how repetitious jobs affect employee retention. Employees forced to undertake unfulfilling work are more inclined to seek other employment opportunities. Although automation may be costly in the short term, the long-term benefits may greatly outweigh the initial expenditures. Businesses may keep exceptional talent and avoid unnecessary spending connected with filling unfilled positions by focusing employee development for more gratifying professions that they are interested in and allowing robots to undertake tedious duties.
Implementing Automation: Best Practices And Strategies
Business executives should consider a few factors when considering whether robotic automation is a good match for their company. The first step will be to figure out their customer’s mission. Automation is beneficial not only to the company but also to the consumer. Leaders will be better able to decide how to apply automation to support their operations if they understand what their customers desire.
Identifying your company’s pain areas and opportunities is another excellent practice. This part of the process is crucial for assuring the success of automation in your workflows. You risk losing the full benefits of your investment if you don’t have a basic comprehension of what you’re trying to enhance.
Companies must think about their staff and effectively support them in collaborating with robots before using automation. Before deploying automation, create a learning plan and distribute it to employees. This will assist shorten learning curves and boosting automation adoption in the workplace.
Learning curves and problems are to be expected with every new shift. One such change we can anticipate is customer adoption and how they use automation in their present procedures and daily operations. It’s not enough to just add automation. Customers will have to recognize and choose the proper automation implementation for their company’s specific needs.
Another difficulty we may face is a lack of acceptance. Consumers will need time to adjust to the idea of vehicles moving about them in stores for front-of-store applications of robots, such as in retail for replenishing shelves. Many consumers are also concerned about data privacy; therefore, deploying every new technology inevitably raises this issue.
Automation can be an ally, not an adversary.
Robotics and automation have the potential to drive new levels of economic growth and productivity, and as we’ve shown, they aren’t as dangerous to jobs as some may assume. As the public gets more aware of the benefits of automation and robotics, human workers will begin to regard robots more positively.