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The “workers” are industrial robots, which have become smarter, faster, more affordable, and offer advanced capabilities such as sensing, dexterity, memory and trainability. The report, titled, “The new hire: How a new generation of robots is transforming manufacturing,” is based on a survey of 120 industrial manufacturers and finds that 59 percent of companies are currently using some form of robotics technology.
Barriers to adoption still exist however, due to limitations such as cost, the lack of perceived need, and access to expertise and skills. Manufacturers have been generally slow to adapt to the workforce change, especially if their current practices continue to generate a positive bottom line.
“The business will dictate how and when they adopt the technology,” said Bobby Bono, PwC manufacturing leader. “If the competition is making the products cheaper and faster, or if different leadership comes in, (manufacturers) will be open to change.”
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