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In the current time role of technology is highly important for the business organization. There isa range of changes are implemented in the technology since the invention of the computer and it was the revolution of all business industries(Dekker and Woods, 2018). Automation is considered as the development of technologies and applications to produce goods and services with or without human interaction. This report is based on the impact of automation technology on the manufacturing sector organization. The concept of automation technology will be analysed in the report.The role of the automation will be analysed for the manufacturing sector organization. Various benefits of the automation for the manufacturing sector organization will be analysed in the study. Different challenges and issues of the automation technology will be analysed in the report.
Concept of Automation
Automation technology is considered a revolution in the manufacturing sector company. Automation technology can be explained as technology that can be used to develop a process or machine that is capable of performing certain action automatically. Automation is defined as technology that can be used by the organization for monitoring, control, production, and delivery of products and services at the end. The level of human interaction in very low in the automation technology.There are different type of automation technology are used by the business organization in the manufacturing and processing of goods or services(Bauer and Schlake, 2017).The main type of automation technology is- fixed automation, programmable automation and flexible automation. These are the most common type of automation technologies that are used in the manufacturing sector.
Fixed automation is also defined as hard automation. In this technology, a system is developed that follows sequences of tasks to develop or manufacture a product. At the time of developing this system, sequence of operation are fixed by the developer which are rigid and cannot be changed later.This type of automation technology is considered as fixed or hard automation.
This type of automation is used in the manufacturing sector organization where products or services are manufactured in batches. The size of the batch could be different and it is depended on the requirement of the client or customer. For example, computer numeric control machine can be considered as programmable automation machine(Lee and Park, 2018). In this type of automation, various changes can be made in the program of the system to manufacture different type of product or service. Sheet cutting machine is the best suitable example of programmable automation.
The flexible automation technology can be considered as the extension of programmable automation. This technology is developed by the engineers to avoid several issues that are associated with programmable automation technology.The major issue in the programmable technology is related to reprogramming issue. In programmable automation technology, it is required to perform reprogramming to keep process free from errors and develop products accordingly. In case of flexible automation technology, manufacturing sector organization can perform the production of goods and services continuously without any interruption.This technology does not need reprogramming on regular basis. The changes in the product specification are optimised by the machines effectively. It is how this technology is more effective than programmable automation technology.
All these three types of machines are used by business organizations as per their requirement. Automation technology can be explained as the replacement of the men power with programmable machines(Parasuraman and Mouloua, 2018). This type of machines or technologies canbe used by the organization to increase the productivity of the manufacturing plant.
Development with Automation Technology
There is range of technologies, tools and systems are used in the automation technology. Different technologies and machines are combined in the process to design automation technology. Automation technology is consists of tools and systems like computers, sensors, data storing technology, software and physical machines(Wang and Li, 2019). All these technologies are combined to develop automation technology. The development of the automation technology is originated from the development of the first computer that is known as ANIAC. Development of computer technology has to lead the development of trend of miniaturization of the machines and improve the capability of the machines. The major focus of the electronics industry to reduce the cost of the automated machines, make them smaller and make them cost-effective.
The major development in the electronic industry happens with the development of microprocessor and miniature multi-circuited devices that are capable of performingthe various arithmetic function of the large size computer device. Development in both electronic devices and storage technology developed parallel with time. Advance in the electronic sector has improved the dimension of the automation industry. For example, sensors and controlling circuits are major tools that are used in automation technology. Automation technology is a combination of both mechanical and computer technology(Nouzil, Raza and Pervaiz, 2017). In this technology, machines that are powered by electricity are controlled by computer programs. Artificial intelligence is a major advancement in automation technology. The artificial intelligence is consists of a self-learning process that can improvise the effectiveness of the automation technology. This technology can help the manufacturing sector organization to increase their productivity and gain higher profit in the market place. This is how automation is one of the best technology that can be used by the manufacturing organization to increase production rate and reduce number of errors in the manufacturing process.
Automation Technology in Manufacturing Sector
This is main benefit of the business organization to increase their productivity by increasing rate of production. In the traditional manufacturing process, organizations were using manual process that is consist of human interference. The main issue with the traditional manufacturing process is related to the rate of production and the number of errors in the production process. Due to human error and machine error organization can face major loss. In this case, automation technology is highly efficient for the business organization. The major advantage of the automation technology is related to the minimum human interaction, less number of error in the production process, and high production of manufacturing rate(Acemoglu and Restrepo, 2018). This is big advance that is implemented in the manufacturing sector. There are different organizations are using automation in their core manufacturing plant. Role of automation is crucial in the manufacturing industry. For example, cars manufacturing organizations, toys manufacturing companies, food sector organization, electronics goods producing organization and various assembly units of different companies are using automation as major unit in the production process.Different type of automation is used in different type of manufacturing unit. In the automobile industry and assembly line of an organization fixed automation technology is used by the company. Programmable automation technology is used in the organization that produce goods in batches. The flexible automation technology is used in those organizations where robotic manufacturing is required.
Application of Automation in Manufacturing Plant of a Company
In the current time, automation is considered as one of the most efficient technologies that are used by the business organization in manufacturing sector. Due to flexibility and ability of customization, this technology is widely used by the business organization. Some of the major application of the business organization are- Enhance Safety in the organization, Time Saving, Improve the Quality of Goods & Services, and Reduce the Monitoring Cost.
Enhance Safety in the organization
This is one of the main application of automation in the manufacturing sector. There are different operations are performed by the business organization and some of these operations are highly difficult to handle and these operations are hazardous for human beings. In this case, this is important for the business organization to reduce human interaction from the tasks. This can help the organization to keep their employees safe from risky operations. In this case, use of automation technology can reduce the chances of error from the operations and it also reduces the difficulty level of the task. With automation technology, heavy tasks and operations also can be performed by the organization. Because this technology is automated. So, there is no chance of human error in the process. This is how safety in the workplace can be improved.
Due to the automation process and specific task &operation, sequence helps the organization to improve the production rate of the production line in manufacturing plant. Automation can help the organization to run the manufacturing line more effectively and efficiently(Wollschlaeger, Sauter and Jasperneite, 2017). Time taken in the manufacturing of each product can be reduced by implementing automation technology in the production line. This technology can be the organization to meet the customer needs effectively. It is how automation technology can be used by the organization to reduce the time in the production process.
Improve the Quality of Goods & Services
In the high demand time, this is difficult for the manufacturing organization to meet the demands of customers because of the manual manufacturing process. In the manual process, chances of error and quality issues are also high. Manufacturing of poor quality product can reduce the profitability of the organization and also it can increase the loss of the company.In this case,the application of automation is most effective and this technology can provide the capability to the organization to produce goods and services with high quality and accuracy at high production speed. This is how automation technology can be used by the organization to gain a high production rate which accurate quality and performance.
Reduce the Monitoring Cost
This is most important for the business organization to effectively monitor the operations that are going on within the manufacturing plant of the company. This is a process that is used by the management of the company to track the performance of employees in the operations of company. The cost of the monitoring process is too high and it is highly difficult for the management of the company to consider the entire element in the tracking process to ensure the effectiveness of the production process. With help of automation technology requirement of the monitoring can be reduced.
These are some major application of the automation technology in the manufacturing sector organization.
Benefits of Automation Technology
There are different benefits of automation for the business organization. The main benefits of the automation technology for the business organization are- lower operation cost, improved worker safety, reduced factory lead time, faster Return of Investment, Competitive advantage, increased production output, Quality improvement, reduced carbon footprint, Better planning, reduced need of outsourcing, utilization of floor space and easy integration. These are major benefits of automation technology.
Lower Operation Cost-
This is one of the most effective advantages of automation technology. This technology can be used by the organization to reduce the operational cost of the company. Automation technology reduces the overall labour cost of company and this can help the company to increase the marginal profit in target market.
Improved Worker Safety-
Automation technology can help the organization to reduce the involvement of the human resource in dangerous tasks. Some of the tasks that are performed in organization and can cause damage to the employees during the operation process, automation technology can be used by the company to keep the employees away from these tasks and operations(Wollschlaeger, Sauter and Jasperneite, 2017). For example, tasks that are consists of heavy machinery, nuclear radiation and high temperature, these type of activities can be performed with help of automation technology.
Reduced Factory Lead Time-
Automation technology is capable of producing goods at high speed to meet the high demand for the goods in target market. This technology can continuously work for weeks and months to meet the demand of goods in market place. It is how it can help the organization to meet the demands of customers within time.
Faster Return of Investment-
This is most crucial advantage of automation technology for business organization. The return of investment in automation technology is very quick. The investment that is made by the organization to implement automation in organization can be recovered very soon. This is how organizations can easily implement automation technology.
In current time, this is most important for the business organization to meet the demand of the customers in market place with better quality. Automation technology can help the organization to meet the demand of company product in target market with the minimum number of error or quality rejection. Automation also can help the organization to increase the production of goods within small period.
All the operations that are performed by the organization using automation technology are based on the systematic process and sequence. This can help the organization to avoid quality error in the production of goods. Automation technology is effective to maintain a high-quality standard in the production process.
Reduced Carbon Footprint-
With the automation technology, the production of waste material is very low. This reduced amount of waste can reduce the carbon footprint of the company to make the operations of organization sustainable and effective for the environment(Frey, 2020). Reduced carbon footprint can help the organization to reduce the negative impact on the environment.
With automation process organization, have better chances to develop an effective plan as per the production requirement of the company. This process can help the organization to reduce operation cost of manufacturing plan and profitability of the organization also can be improved.
Reduced Need for Outsourcing-
Some times business organization uses the services of external organization to meet the production capability to meet the demand of company goods in market place. Automation technology can help the organization to effectively meet the demand of the customer without outsourcing process because productivity of automation technology is more than manual machines and off time is negligible with this technology.
Utilization of Floor Space-
With automation process, organization can effectively utilise the floor space. For the implementation of automation technology, small space is required. Through this process, additional machinery can be avoided by the organization.
This is very easy to connect the current technology of organization with automation technology. Flexibility and customization capability can help the organization to effectively integrate current machinery with automation technology.
This is major advantages of automation technology for the business organization.
Challenges with Automation Technology
The major challenges which are associated with automation technology are- certain limits of the machinery is involved in the automation process. Organization need to use a heavy electrical supply to make the automation system run effectively(Frey, 2020). The initial investment of automation is very high as compared to other technology. Automation is one of the major reason for unemployment on the global level.Sometimesthe unpredictable cost of automation process can increase the cost that is saved by the automation technology. These are the major disadvantage of automation technology for the business organization.
This report is concluding the impact of automation technology on the manufacturing industry. Various factors related to the automation process has been analysed in the report. The concept of automation technology and the development of automation technology also has been discussed in the report.A different application of automation technology also has been analysed in the report. The advantage and disadvantages of automation technology for manufacturing sector organization also has been discussed in the report.
Books and Journals
Dekker, S. and Woods, D., 2018. Automation and its impact on human cognition. In Coping with Computers in the Cockpit (pp. 7-28). Routledge.
Lee, D.H. and Park, J.W., 2018. System Improvement for Application and Diffusion of Earthwork Surveying Automation Technology. The Journal of the Korea Contents Association. 18(6). pp.303-313.
Parasuraman, R. and Mouloua, M. eds., 2018. Automation and human performance: Theory and applications. Routledge.
Wang, K. and Li, W., 2019. Application of Electrical Automation Technology in Power System. Journal of Power and Energy Engineering. 7(5). pp.8-13.
Nouzil, I., Raza, A. and Pervaiz, S., 2017. Social aspects of automation: Some critical insights. ICMIM. 244. pp.1-9.
Acemoglu, D. and Restrepo, P., 2018. Demographics and automation (No. w24421). National Bureau of Economic Research.
Wollschlaeger, M., Sauter, T. and Jasperneite, J., 2017. The future of industrial communication: Automation networks in the era of the internet of things and industry 4.0. IEEE industrial electronics magazine. 11(1). pp.17-27.
Frey, C.B., 2020. The technology trap: Capital, labor, and power in the age of automation. Princeton University Press.
Bauer, M. and Schlake, J.C., 2017, September. Changes to the automation architecture: Impact of technology on control systems algorithms. In 2017 22nd IEEE International Conference on Emerging Technologies and Factory Automation (ETFA) (pp. 1-8). IEEE.
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