Investment into increasing automation pays off – read these five benefits
Keeping up with ever-fiercer competition requires manufacturing industry companies to scale their production efficiently, sustainably, and in a controlled way without proportionately rising costs and investments in quality control. Welding automation can help to achieve this – below we’ve listed five reasons to invest in increasing production automation:
1) The need for labour does not increase as production rises
When material and information flows are optimally automated, people need only to ensure that the robots are programmed and that they have enough material to work with. Data is transferred between systems automatically, so information is always up to date in the warehouse management system. From a human resources perspective, this is positive not only because it decreases the need for third-shift and night workers, but also creates more jobs that generate business value as routine work moves towards programs, robotics, and planning.
2) Guaranteed investment profitability
The time it takes to deploy the solution and the investment’s repayment period always depend on how big of a step was taken in development. In any case, production will increase, as manufacturing may be several times more profitable after the investment. The most common deployment period for our welding automation systems is 2-3 months. During this period, the solution is further refined to meet the company’s production needs, and production is run at the target speed. After a year and a half, the investment will have paid itself back and begin to generate significant added value for profitability.
3) Capacity will rise in a sustainable and controlled way
The target capacity is affected by the current level of robotics and automation, and how big of a development step is being taken. In practice, it is possible to increase the level of welding automation significantly, but it is usually more sensible to divide it into parts so that support functions can be developed and staff can be trained in line with growth in a controlled way. Great leaps forward are also expensive investments. At the start of a project, we always begin with a discussion with the customer about the level of desired capacity and the kind of development step that is sensible to ensure that the investment generates sustainable growth for the company. Management should initiate this discussion within the company in advance as it creates a framework for the entire project. Based on the targets, we design a concept which we use to automate, robotise and develop production processes. The most important indicator for the solution we conceptualise is achieving the production target, and we guarantee this in full.
4) Quality improves and becomes consistent throughout production
A person can always flexibly adapt and change their behaviour as needed. That has its benefits, but it can also easily lead to misunderstandings, errors, and quality defects arising from a person’s skills, experience, or energy levels. Welding automation removes human factors and ensures that production and the finished product are always of consistent quality. Quality also simultaneously improves. In order for the robot to produce high-quality finished products, the robot must be fed with high-quality materials. The weld and repeatability accuracy improve as there are no fluctuations in gaps, welding angles or tack welds. The working process is also streamlined because the need for repairs and inspections decreases significantly.
5) Work ergonomics and occupational safety improve
The further you go with welding automation, the more people carry out knowledge work rather than manual and physical labour. Tasking robots with welding work, tack welding, and material collection decreases the human workload significantly, which in turn reduces occupational health issues caused by strenuous positions and heavy lifting.
Are you interested in hearing more about how to develop your production automation?
Automation deployment is always planned around the customer’s needs and point of departure. We have delivered light, partial robotisations as well as advanced, fully automated solutions for our customers.
Let us know how you want to develop your production and what kind of solution you’re looking for, and let’s sit down and talk about the possibilities!