As customer demands continue to surge, companies seek innovative solutions to maintain efficiency and productivity to combat the pressure of skilled labor shortage. Robotics has emerged as a game-changer, offering a range of possibilities across various industries. From automated assembly lines to intelligent warehouse systems, robots are stepping in to plug the gaps left by the shortage of skilled labor. This article will discuss the top three robotics trends predicted by ABB in the wake of the current situation. Read more
Current trends in robotics
Approximately 3.5 million robots are currently operational around the world – the value of the installations is estimated at 15.7 billion USD
Defining current trends is significant in robotics to attract users from small businesses to global OEMs, according to the International Federation of Robotics President Marina Bill. She further added that
Robots play a fundamental role in securing the changing demands of manufacturers around the world
Robotics Trends#1 Demand for robots will increase due to the labor shortage faced by industries globally. As companies increasingly consider reshoring their operations, robot labors take on new responsibilities in various tasks.
The persisting labor shortages across industries, driven by factors such as aging populations and the aversion to low-paying and unfulfilling jobs, are already causing significant impact and are projected to continue into 2023 and beyond. As a result, it is estimated that over 85 million job positions will remain vacant by 2030, hindering economic growth and necessitating innovative solutions for workforce gaps.
Demographic shifts and aging populations indicate that countries such as the U.S. will suffer from an ongoing labor shortage and hiring will remain challenging, as per economists’ predictions worldwide. According to a Manpower survey (conducted across 41 countries among 39000 employees), the average skill shortage in all countries in 2023 is 77%.
The demand for robotics is expected to surge, particularly in countries where companies are pursuing re- or near-shoring strategies to enhance the resilience of their supply chains in the face of global events. As per a survey conducted by ABB Robotics in 2022 involving 1,610 companies from the United States and Europe, approximately 74% of European businesses and 70% of U.S. businesses expressed intentions to re- or near-shore their operations. Among these respondents, 75% in Europe and 62 percent in the USA indicated plans to invest in robotic automation within the next three years.
Robotics Trends#2 The use of artificial intelligence and autonomous technology will allow robots to perform more tasks in a range of new industries, making them easier to use, integrate, and access
As the advancements in autonomous technologies continue, the adoption of robots in various industries is expected to increase. Companies will either make their initial investments in robots or explore new applications for their deployment. They can also go for tried and tested method by relying on RaaS (Robot-as-a-Service) to avoid the initial investment costs and leverage robot rentals. PROVEN Robotics’ premium delivery robots, like BellaBot or KettyBot, powered by state-of-the-art autonomous navigation technology, have already demonstrated their ability to enhance productivity, improve operational flexibility, and expedite processes. These solutions facilitate the transition from conventional production lines to integrated, scalable, and modular production cells while optimizing component delivery across facilities.
Integrating artificial intelligence (AI) in robotics drives significant progress in autonomous grasping and positioning capabilities, expanding the range of tasks robots can undertake. For instance, many GCC government and private sector clients have employed Pepper robots in client-facing roles to enhance customer experiences. Furthermore, continuous simplification of robot programming software and controllers eliminates the need for specialized expertise, thereby reducing barriers to adoption.
In the near future, connected digital networks will emerge, leveraging open platforms that facilitate seamless integration of robots, software, and controllers from different vendors, making robots more accessible to smaller companies and start-ups and enabling them to embrace automation.
Robotics Trends#3 Enhancing the collaboration between industry and educational institutions through specialized partnerships will play a pivotal role in equipping present and future workers with the necessary skills to excel in an era of automation.
As the integration of robots becomes more prevalent across various industries, it becomes increasingly crucial for workers to acquire new skills that will enable them to thrive in an automated environment. This necessitates a comprehensive and collaborative approach involving educational institutions, businesses of all sizes, and supporting associations to provide adequate training opportunities.
In response to the growing presence of robots in factories, warehouses, and other work settings, partnerships between robot vendors, manufacturers, and educators are expected to rise. These collaborations ensure that individuals possess the requisite skills for a future driven by automation. Educational institutions can effectively teach people of all ages the programming and operational skills essential for utilizing robotic automation by using tools such as simulation and programming software, as well as augmented and virtual reality (AR and VR).
Future of Robotics: 2023 and Beyond
In the face of escalating energy costs, enhancing energy efficiency is paramount for companies to maintain competitiveness. Incorporating robotics within manufacturing processes offers numerous advantages in reducing energy consumption. Compared to conventional assembly lines, using robots significantly saves energy by minimizing heating requirements. Additionally, robots operate at high speeds, enhancing production rates and ultimately rendering manufacturing processes more time- and energy-efficient. These factors will contribute to a massive surge in robot demand, and for that, 2023 will be seen as a year of opportunity for robotics, enabling companies and their workforces to reach new levels of productivity, efficiency, and flexibility.
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