How Automation is Shaping the Future of Manufacturing in the World

Car Manufacturing

Automation enables fast production of goods and products with the least amount of cost. It also ensures high-quality products manufactured in a safe environment and competitive advantages through the best return on investment.

Manufacturers have been using automation for decades, customizing it to match specific requirements. Automation technology has evolved to fill the gap between labour shortages, tight budgets, and delivery deadlines. It is expected to evolve at a faster pace in the future to meet new market demands.

Here are some statistics about the future of automation

The automation market is expected to grow from USD 196.6 billion in 2021 to USD 412.8 billion by 2030, with a CAGR of 8.59%. (Source: Quixy)

Automation software is expected to grow at a CAGR of 17.67 percent from 2021 to 2027 (source: Statista).

25 percent of the total job market is expected to be automated by 2030 (source: Quixy).

60% of occupations could save 30% of their time with automation (source: McKinsey).

62 percent of MNCs will invest in robotics and automation (source: Deloitte).

Key Impacts of Automation on the Manufacturing Industry

Businesses adopting automation are seeing impeccable improvements in efficiency, productivity, and competition in the market. Some of the changes are as follows:

Increased Efficiency and Precision:

Automation has increased the efficiency of manufacturing units with pin-point precision.

Manufacturers are using robots and automated systems to perform repetitive tasks with absolute accuracy and zero error.

It has tremendously improved the quality of products along with the speed of production.

Now manufacturers can easily cope with the ever-increasing market demand with no sweat.

Cost Savings and Improved Competitiveness:

"The future is not about replacing people with robots, but about empowering them with intelligent tools. Automation needs to be human-centric, focusing on creating new, higher-skilled jobs." Klaus Helmrich, CEO of Bosch Rexroth

A significant drop in labour costs over the long term has been seen in businesses adopting automation.

Though initial investment in robotics and automation has incurred costs for the production houses, over the long term, they save a lot of money on maintenance and operations.

The economy of scale achieved through automation and robotics is giving manufacturers a competitive edge in the global market.

Flexibility and Customization:

The automated systems and robots that you will use in the manufacturing of goods are flexible compared to traditional systems.

You can reprogram your automated systems as per your requirements about the tasks and product variations.

This helps you quickly adapt to the market and produce goods as per your customers’ needs and wants.

It helps you meet your delivery deadlines without hassle and keeps the competition at bay.

"In emerging markets like India, automation presents a unique

opportunity to bridge the skill gap and leapfrog into advanced manufacturing. It can create a wave of new

industrial jobs requiring digital and technical expertise." Anand Mahindra, Chairman of Mahindra Group (India)

Data-Driven Decision Making:

When operating automation through sensors and devices, you will generate a huge amount of data

This data will help you in the future to predict maintenance, make informed decisions, and optimise the manufacturing process.

Manufacturers will be bestowed with insights into their operations.

It will enable manufacturers to find areas for improvement and innovation.

Workforce Dynamics and Skill Requirements:

The increasing use of manufacturing has changed the role of labor in the manufacturing business.

The demand for knowledge workers will surge significantly to operate the complex machinery of automation systems.

A different set of experts will be required for the maintenance and troubleshooting of systems.

Manufacturing companies need to provide training, workshops, and other skill development programs to their workforce.

This will help both the company and its employees cope with increasing market demand.

Global Supply Chain Resilience:

Automation will strengthen the global supply chain and make it more responsive to market changes.

It will solve logistical problems and minimize dependence on a manual workforce.

It will help the manufacturing companies be ready for crises like pandemics, natural calamities, and geopolitical events.

Environmental Sustainability:

Automation will be more energy efficient in the future, minimising industrial waste, conserving energy resources, and maximizing production without impacting the global environment.

Many industries have started adopting eco-friendly practices to help sustain the environment.

"The government has taken several measures in this regard by extending benefits and concessions for green investments (e.g., renewable energy, effluent treatment plants, etc.). The government should ensure that the infrastructure that is now developed in the country is aligned with its sustainability goals as well." The Economic Times

Expert's views on the future of automation

"Automation is not about replacing workers, it's about empowering them. By taking over repetitive tasks, automation allows humans to focus on higher-level thinking, problem-solving, and innovation." - Klaus Schwab, Founder and Executive Chairman of the World Economic Forum

"India can become a global manufacturing hub, but we must strive for a future where technology and human capital work together harmoniously. Automation should augment human capabilities, not replace them. We need to invest in education and skilling programs to prepare our workforce for the jobs of tomorrow." - Anand Mahindra, Chairman of Mahindra Group (India)

"The future of manufacturing lies in human-machine collaboration. We need to design systems that leverage the strengths of both, where machines handle precision and repetitive tasks, and humans provide creativity, judgment, and flexibility." - Chris Miller, Chief Technology Officer of Siemens

"In a rapidly changing world, adaptability is key for success. Indian manufacturers need to embrace flexible and scalable automation solutions to adapt to evolving market demands and remain competitive on the global stage." - Nirmala Sitharaman, Finance Minister of India

"Advanced automation, coupled with data analytics and AI, will unlock unprecedented levels of efficiency and customization in manufacturing. This will transform entire industries and create new products and services we can't even imagine today." - Ursula Burns, Former CEO of Xerox

"The ethical and social implications of automation in manufacturing must be carefully considered. We need to ensure that job displacement is minimized through reskilling and upskilling programs, and that the benefits of automation are shared equitably." - Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla and SpaceX

"In the symphony of progress, automations are like the conductors of a great orchestra. They handle repetitive tasks, freeing up people to be more creative and inventive. Let's welcome the teamwork of humans and machines, creating a better and brighter future together." Sumit Gupta Owner of Servo Stabilizer India

"Small and medium-sized manufacturers will need to adopt smart automation solutions to remain competitive in the future. These solutions should be adaptable, affordable, and easy to integrate." - Liming Zhu, Director of the Advanced Manufacturing Institute

"Ultimately, the success of automation in manufacturing will depend on collaboration between industry, academia, and government. We need to work together to develop the technologies, skills, and infrastructure needed for a thriving future." - Mike Rowe, Dirty Jobs host and advocate for skilled trades

Conclusion

The future of manufacturing is inevitably entangled with automation.

With further progress in innovation, technology, AI, and robotics, we will set new standards for quality products.

The manufacturing industry will face the challenge of training and educating its workforce in operating, maintaining, and troubleshooting automated systems.

And it will require prompt initial investments.

The ROI for such investments will be high, and the business will improve more in terms of productivity, effectiveness, cost-efficiency, sustainability, and competitiveness in the global market.

Manufacturers who embrace this change will grow fast because innovation and adaptability are paramount to thriving businesses in the future.

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