Do Small Businesses Need a Robot?

A majority of businesses that use robots hail from the automotive, electronics, and consumer goods industries. However, small businesses are a growing segment of the robotics market. This is because budding businesses usually have a smaller range of products with a niche market. Thus, they don’t have a lot of diversifying opportunities.

Interestingly, a clear understanding of the flexibility of business systems could allow robots to fulfill a business’ present and future needs. With flexible automation, robots can be bought and put to work quickly.

Programming specialist – A bigger challenge than robots

Most small businesses believe that an engineer has to be hired along with purchasing the robot – to fix technical issues as well as reprogram it for other uses. On the contrary, most robot systems are user-friendly and convenient to operate.

Robot manufacturers make programming, using, and maintaining robots quite simple. Moreover, nearly all integrators offer training to buyers – so that they can maintain and program robots on their own.

Cost of robot and equipment

This is another challenge that makes small businesses reluctant to buy robots. However, increased demand is making robots affordable to businesses of all sizes and types. Robots can also be leased for special situations, which keeps the costs down.

It is noteworthy that robots end up saving time, human-made errors, and blunders caused due to chasing deadlines. So, while investing in a robot might seem like a big decision at the time, the return on investment is usually less than two years. Decreased health insurance benefits, reduced labor costs, and increased production speeds are just a few of the many benefits of having a robot.

Some other benefits include:

  1. Robots are flexible for smaller runs where there the demand for production is higher.
  2. They can handle multiple SKUs or machine operations without getting distracted.
  3. Offline programming is another feature that allows them to continue working while the programmer sets up new tasks for robots.
  4. Robots are a wise investment in companies where seasonal production takes place – with work cells using tooling only when necessary.

Some of the prominent industries that are already using robots are packaging, welding, material handling, and assembly. Does your business belong to any one of these industry verticals? Are you using a robot in your company? Would you like to have one as part of your workforce? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below.

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