Fictron Industrial Supplies Sdn Bhd
5-6, Jalan USJ 9/5Q,
Subang Business Centre,
47620 UEP Subang Jaya,
Selangor, Malaysia.


Selangor Office:
36, Jalan Puteri 5/12,
Bandar Puteri,
47100 Puchong,

Penang Office:
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11600 Green Lane,
Penang, Malaysia.

Automation Isní»t the Antagonist

Automation Isní»t the Antagonist
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Movie villains are commonly regarded for their capability to earn respect from the viewer, even when they ought to be rooting for their defeat. Automation is usually viewed as manufacturing’s societal villain, frightening the jobs of U.S. workers. But, to be able to create new job roles, U.S. manufacturers can not fear the automation uprising.
Seemingly, U.S. manufacturing isn't in a good position. According to data published by Federal Reserve, U.S. factory production slumped for the second month in February 2019 and reports by the Institute for Supply Management echoed a similar sentiment, stating that U.S. factories had dropped in several areas, including employment, orders, production and deliveries.
The prevalent story of the media is that nothing can stop the on-going drop of manufacturing. But maybe the industry’s savior depends in one of its most notorious antagonists – automation.
America has an unique relationship with automated technology. While the first six-axis robots were launched to automotive production lines around the 1960s, narratives since then have often focused on the risk technology poses to employment, rather than the production benefits and new job roles it can bring.
You should not get me wrong, there’s no questioning automation has displaced some American jobs. However, that’s not to imply the industry is failing, nor does it mean jobs in U.S. manufacturing are impossible to find. Work in the sector certainly still exists, just not the same positions our grandmothers or grandfathers might have held.
Assembly applications are an ideal example of this. Compared with factories of the past, manufacturers today use conveyors, machine vision systems and pick and place equipment to finish assembly automatically. As a result, the number of assembly jobs has been slowly declining and is expected to fall by 14 percent by 2026 according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.  However, not all job roles in the factory have so bleak of a future.
Software development, for example, was almost entirely absent from manufacturing facilities of the past. Today, nevertheless, developers play an essential role in deploying automation, programming machinery and maintaining control software. Unsurprisingly then, vacancies in software are expected to increase by 24 percent by 2026, surpassing the number of jobs lost in assembly roles and creating entirely new opportunities.
In the time of the digital transformation of factories, workers with technical skillsets like this will become unbelievably valuable. For example, if making incremental deployments of automation, facilities will be needing regular installation and maintenance of industrial parts – and the staff to do so.
Automation isn't the movie villain it is often depicted to be and amazingly, most manufacturers can see its benefit and therefore aren't rooting for its defeat. The U.S. remains one of the world’s most highly profitable markets for manufacturing, but the sector needs an injection of optimism about automation and its potential to create jobs.
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