5 benefits of Cobots
For many companies, it is becoming increasingly difficult to find a good path in today’s production landscape. This is mainly due to two important aspects. On the one hand, the shortage of skilled workers is increasing more and more. The baby boomers are retiring, leaving the workforce and taking their skills with them. More and more research predicts a significant shortage of qualified employees in the next decade. For example, this study by Deloitte.
As a second aspect we can mention the demanding customers. They demand real-time availability, even better quality, fair working conditions and lower costs. Added to this is a volatile and unpredictable global economy.
How can you counter these trends and run your business profitably? Accelerate the automation in your company.
Don’t worry, we are not proposing industrial robots that require a large investment and safety restrictions. We are talking about robots or collaborating robots. They remove the limitations of traditional robots and allow even the smallest companies to automate their production.
We show you 5 ways how you will benefit from using Cobots.
Increase in productivity
Especially with repetitive, everyday and ergonomically challenging work, the risk of injury for employees is very high. At the same time, these tasks are ideally suited for the use of Cobots. These tasks occur in many production environments. In many application areas, Cobots can therefore significantly increase productivity. Collaborating robots work alongside your employees and take over the boring and repetitive tasks. In doing so, they reduce human error and allow you to use your employees for more valuable work.
An example of this application is Hyundae Induction Hardening Heat Treatment (HIHHT). The company is struggling with the fact that mistakes are constantly occurring due to employee fatigue in repetitive tasks. After installing two UR10 robots, the error rate dropped from 0.03% to 0.01% and production efficiency increased by 31%. In addition, the automation has enabled two more employees to be hired.
HIHHT uses two UR10 robots in its heat treatment process by induction hardening, whereby the untreated automotive component is placed in the treatment machine and then the treated component is placed on a conveyor belt.
Of course, the goal of every company is to be as profitable as possible. If you use Cobots, you will reduce the costs of production and thus increase your profitability. A study conducted by the British research company Smither Pira 2019 showed that a 1% reduction in production costs means a 34% increase in profits.
People can use the Cobots as a tool to ensure better accuracy and consistency. This saves unnecessary downtime, which can be very costly, and shortens cycle times.
At first, your employees will most likely be skeptical of the Cobots. However, this skepticism is completely unfounded. Cobots will not and should not replace human labor. They are there to work alongside the employees. The Cobots do the monotonous and error-prone work. Your employees can then position you better and give you tasks that require more knowledge, skill and common sense. If you do not confront your employees with dull and dangerous work, you can take on more rewarding tasks. According to a study by McKinsey in 2019, extensive automation can make it easier to recruit and retain employees. This happens mainly because you create new technical tasks with better pay, better opportunities and better working conditions.
Consumers today demand higher quality goods at lower cost. By using Cobots you minimize human error and can improve product quality. They ensure consistency and accuracy, improve your ability to produce complex goods, while making it easier to identify errors.
RUPES is committed to “zero defects” in its production. The company came to Universal Robots in search of a solution. The workforce needed to be empowered to do a better job, waste was to be minimized and immediate results were desired.
By using Cobots in production, RUPES was able to reduce or even eliminate human error. In addition, less raw materials were wasted, thus protecting the environment. The goal of “zero defects” was thus achieved.
RUPES uses UR robots in its production line. Employees found the robots easy and quick to install and program, and they had an immediate impact – maintaining product quality and improving productivity.
Flexibility is becoming increasingly important for many companies. Economic uncertainty and unpredictable consumer behaviour make it difficult for manufacturers to predict production. Cobots are a great help in this respect. With collaborating robots, you can adapt your production completely flexibly to demand and expand into new markets much faster. Many tasks are possible, from quality assurance, machine loading to metal stamping and inspection. Now Cobots are even able to automate heavy and multi-part material handling. There is no need to compromise on precision. It is also possible to program a Cobot with different tasks. This allows you to use it flexibly, depending on your needs.
For 10 years now, Cobots have been bringing considerable added value to many companies. In the meantime, automation has become a must for many manufacturers in order to keep production in the country. Companies that do not invest in Cobots will sooner or later get into trouble. Cobots are essential to remain competitive.