Robotics research is thriving in universities and robotics hubs across the country. The “industrial renaissance in North America continues unabated,” according to the International Federation of Robotics (IFR).
Global brands and small-to-medium enterprises are adopting new technologies to gain competitive advantages.
But what if you’re not well versed in robotics and automated solutions? The technology and terminology can seem overwhelming. Getting a grasp of the basics is essential and it’s possible to do so even if you don’t have a technical background and your time is in short supply.
The Robotic Industries Association (RIA) has a Beginner’s Guide on its website linking to useful resources.
Robots are Indispensible
Investment in robotics is continuing as companies automate to remain competitive. The IFR reported in an update, US-Industry: 135,000 new robots bring jobs back home, that the number of newly installed industrial robots has more than tripled since the financial crisis of 2009.
The modern day factory is taking on a new look. Working smart has a whole new meaning as systems and processes will be data driven.
Strategists Robert Bono and Stephen Pillsbury described in the article 2016 Manufacturing Trends how the same information platform will connect customers and manufacturers:
Operators will access materials on demand, collaborate with robots to use them safely and ergonomically, and rely on virtual work instructions presented at the point of use. Assembly lines will output highly personalized products, sometimes in a lot size of one, that contain zero defects.
Bono and Pillsbury say that industrial manufacturers can’t afford to ignore the changes and advances. By embracing them now, they can improve productivity in their own plants, compete against rivals, and maintain an edge with customers who are seeking their own gains from innovation.
Knowledge is Power
Advances in automation are exciting but what does it take to get workers who are used to traditional processes up to speed?
RIA makes training easy and convenient. Showing how to select qualified integrators, providing in-house safety training, and instructing with free webinars means downtime is kept to a minimum.
There’s plenty of material for users of all skill and knowledge levels.
The webinar Robot 101 shows how robotics has evolved, touches on safety issues, and advises on reducing strain and fatigue among employees.
Advanced users will have adequate instruction. RIA is recognized globally for its active involvement on issues like setting safety standards and its Certified Integrator Program.
Providing knowledge isn’t the only benefit that RIA offers. The organization connects the robotics automation community by offering memberships to end users, industry professionals, and educators as noted on the Membership page.
A variety of networking opportunities occur online and in person with regional and national trainings each year. RIA along with its parent organization, Association for Advancing Automation, is hosting Automate 2017, taking place April 3 – 6 at Chicago’s McCormick Place.
The trade show is held once every two years and is a valuable way to learn how to automate every process in your company.
Thousands of visitors come to learn from industry leaders teaching basic workshops and advanced courses that provide certifications.
Industrial automation is providing solutions for companies of all sizes. Getting your team up to speed and ready for the future doesn’t have to be an overwhelming task with resources available through A3automate.org.