From catching a ride to getting instant medical attention, smartphones have completely changed the way people live and carry out their daily tasks. In a similar way, the rapid evolution of operating technology and production means have transformed manufacturing. Innovative companies like Tesla is the best example of how technology can materialize the seemingly impossible ideas and change our view of reality. Modern food processing equipment, robotics, sensor technology, and smart machines are no less striking.
There is something that drives manufacturers to constantly explore means for improving efficiency and agility. Managing market volatility is one of the biggest challenges manufacturers face today. In order to successfully handle this challenge, manufacturing leaders need a sound combination of speed, agility, and responsiveness. The characteristic of being agile and responsive can also help companies deal with a number of challenges, for example, fluctuating raw material costs.
Most of the successful companies focus on improving production processes and enhancing customer relationships. Small companies even pay more attention to meet customization demands and improve productivity. No matter the size of a company, the manufacturer struggles to maximize capacity utilization and achieve annual cost reductions. Implementing innovative production solutions carefully is the only way to achieve these objectives.
Industrial automation technology indicates that there is never any shortage of opportunities to grow and remain profitable. A business manager has to identify strategic opportunities and technologies that can offer the greatest profit potential. It is also important that a new solution should be in compliance with a company’s competitive differentiators and core capabilities.
It is highly likely that by the year 2020, business owners in every industry will have invested millions of dollars in a broad range of automation and fabrication technologies. Nano-manufacturing, 3D printing, artificial intelligence, smart machines, and the Internet of Things (IoT) will dominate the future.
Investment decisions can depend on a company’s priorities and objectives, market conditions and forecasts. Introducing new technologies is subject to a thorough cost-benefit analysis. The way of conducting cost-benefit analysis can vary from industry to industry.
Automation technologies such as robotic welding, smart sensors, quality control systems, metal fabrication, magnetic inspection, and material handling equipment can help companies achieve the following objectives:
- High productivity
- Improved data availability
- Faster responsiveness to customer expectations
- Production flexibility
- Improved employee engagement
Small companies must learn how to implement automation and improve productivity in a cost-effective manner. The success in manufacturing now largely depends on how efficiently a company can adapt and meet market expectations.