Robotics in Supply chain
Robotics knowledge is an ever evolving technology that is being embraced by companies. Use of robotics in supply chain has proven to be very effective in timely delivery of activities. The traditional robots that have been in use in manufacturing have been unaffordable by many companies. Recent development of low-cost robotics for supply chain improvement carries much potential in the modern world (Aberdeen 2010).
Supply chain management requires effective use of robotics to increase production and reduce production costs involved. Deployment of low cost robotics in the supply chain in the past has shown reduced production costs and improved order turn-around time. The application of low-cost robotics has greater benefits than human labour. Economically, replacing low-level factory workers with automated robotics technology records increased production and safety (Aberdeen 2010).
To improve worldwide competitiveness, the use of low cost robotics is essential to the supply chain. Companies need to be informed of the new automated robotics systems, how they work, and their benefits if properly deployed (Aberdeen 2010). The robotics produced for commercial purposes should be affordable, the assembly and operation of the robotics should be easy to avoid extensive technical support that comes at a high cost.
Development of more user friendly commercial robotics is an approach in existence due to high demand by industries and players in the supply chain. Overwhelming consumer demands are steering the development of more low cost robotics for use in supply chain (Christensen 2009). In developed countries like the U.S. where robotics have been deployed in manufacturing since 1960s, demand for smaller and more accurate robotics is at peak because the people have acquired high levels of education and avoid doing low-level factory jobs.
Supply chain management is faced with many challenges because the workers employed encounter inevitable conditions like sicknesses, leave, fatigue and old age (Zhang 2009). Robotics on the other hand, can work without rest and increase production with quality. American companies that are suffering from a shortage of workers are deploying robotics to replace human resource thus, increasing production, reducing production costs and improving delivery to the customers (Christensen 2009).
Companies and warehouses in the United States have been using the robotics technology although previous versions were huge and required technical support. These companies have participated in robotics development initiatives to facilitate advancement of future robotics (Zhang 2009). The developed robots come equipped with user friendly features for better quality production and quicker order turn-around time.
The industrial robotics industry is gaining fame steadily because the facts about the advantages of this system are now accessible by smaller companies. Over time, industries using robotics have recorded marvelous results. These include improved customer satisfaction, greater productivity, reduced staff expenses, decreased operation costs and quicker customer order turn around time (Zhang 2009). Other advantages are that workers have the advantage of choosing more interesting work and their safety is guaranteed.
Deployment of robotics in the supply chain is a strategy that all players in the channel embrace due to the benefits associated with automation. Effective ways of encouraging employment of robotics in the supply chain is by ensuring affordable robotics are manufactured and the robots are easy to fix.