AI

Will A Robot Take My Manufacturing Job? Yes, No, And Maybe

Will A Robot Take My Manufacturing Job? Yes, No, And Maybe

One of the key drivers of accelerated adoption of industrial robots through the 1980s and beyond was worker safety. We hear much about job losses due to robots, but little about improvements in injury rates thanks to robotic handling. Strenuous and repetitive tasks such as palletizing, or hot and dangerous part handling in metal fabrication, were given over to robots.

Every industrial robot currently requires mechanical, electrical, and software care that wasn't required by older technology. So while unskilled labor may slowly dwindle, higher-level (and therefore higher-paid) opportunities will expand.

Humans Plus Robots: Why the Two Are Better Than Either One Alone

Humans Plus Robots: Why the Two Are Better Than Either One Alone

In their new book, Human + Machine: Reimagining Work in the Age of AI, Paul Daugherty and James Wilson make a compelling case for pairing this particular technology with human capital. In their research, they found that companies that focus on human and machine collaboration create outcomes that are two to more than six times better than those that focus on machine or human alone. For instance, BMW has found that robot/human teams were about 85% more productive than the old assembly line process, where you had industrial robots over on one side of the factory and people working on an old automated assembly line.