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Ready for Robots?

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Successful teams have lots of different players with a variety of skill sets. The is true whether you are playing a sport or manufacturing a part. To run a successful manufacturing operation, you need employees with diverse skills and abilities. Enter the robot.

As robots become easier to use, there is a growing push to integrate them into the manufacturing workforce—making robots a part of the team. During IMTS 2016, Esben Ostergaard, CTO and co-founder of Universal Robots, and Matt Bush, co-founder of Hirebotics sat down with IMTSTV to discuss the future of robots in manufacturing.

Ostergaard emphasized that robots and humans have very different skill sets, and that they can work together to form a strong team. For instance, robots excel at doing repetitive tasks—and doing them with consistency. Meanwhile, humans are far better at creative thinking and developing real-time solutions.

Bush added that the next generation of manufacturing workers is more comfortable with technology. In fact, he said, they would much prefer to work alongside robots than to perform monotonous tasks themselves.

Ostergaard and Bush acknowledged that adoption has been slow in previous decades, but agreed that the skepticism surrounding working with robots is fading. They also noted that the enormous looming skills gap in the manufacturing sector is making robots a more attractive solution.

While many new jobs will be filled by robots, the industry experts agreed that robots are not job killers. Utilizing robots actually helps generate more—and better—jobs. Ultimately, robots are helping to change what it means to be a factory worker in a modern facility.

For more information on robots and all the emerging trends in manufacturing, visit IMTS.com.

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