If your company is considering an investment in robotics this year, you’re not alone. That’s a key conclusion from the SMM Study: Robotics & Technology Engagement lead by Catalyst Connection, CMTC, Fuzehub, and Impact Washington under the Manufacturing Extension Partnership’s Advanced Robotics Collaborative. Of the manufacturers surveyed, 49% say they plan to invest in robotics technology within the next 12-18 months, which is an increase of 67% over investments made in the previous 12-18 months. That number may be poised to increase with concerns related to COVID-19 and the associated social distancing requirements.
Small manufacturers concerned about maximizing the return from robotics investments (that is you, right?) should plan to start with a small project to gain confidence and experience. It is tempting to swing for the fences right off the bat (are you missing baseball too?) but for your first project, it is best to get a quick win first. You can break up a more ambitious project into phases, start with the easier automation task, and once implemented, build from there.
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