What are the costs of cobot automation

Robots in manufacturing

With the rise in technology, automating has become more and more common in manufacturing, especially as a way to keep up with consumer demand and stay ahead of the competition. There is no doubt that automating certain processes within manufacturing can have a large impact on the overall operation. For example, not only will production become a lot more efficient, but costs are likely to go down, and the quality of products is likely to go up.

With all the advantages that come with automation, why don’t most manufacturers choose to do so? Most likely, because of the cost to automate and purchase a robot or cobot in the first place. So, manufacturers and companies need to carefully think about whether they should automate their production line, or just hire additional staff, or even outsource certain tasks to freelancers. As such, it is important to weigh the benefits and costs before committing to a certain solution. But what are the costs of cobot automation?

If you are wondering this exact same question, then you have come to the right place. In this article, we explain and discuss the costs of automation, certain methods and ways you can cut costs, and what automation provides. Make sure to read the whole thing before deciding on a solution yourself!

What is the cost of automation?

So, in case you were wondering, what are the costs of automation? For many companies, costs are one of the most important factors if they are considering an automation solution. To make sure you have properly considered the actual costs, it is important that you consider two major categories: startup costs and maintenance costs.

The startup costs of an automation system can include all the costs that are incurred before the system finally becomes operational. This means you need to consider factors such as how much the robot itself costs, certain tools that make up the robot (such as grippers, frames, sensors, and safety devices, to name a few), and the hours that go into training operators as well as designing the system in the first place.

On the other hand, your maintenance costs will depend on the type of system you have. That being said, common maintenance costs include replacing parts, software support and updates/upgrades, labor ideas for maintenance and repairs, electric or pneumatic power to operate the system, as well as preventative maintenance.

What does automation provide?

If automation costs so much, then why do so many manufacturers turn to it in the first place? This is because no matter how costly automating a production line is, the idea is that most robotic systems will provide more value than what was initially invested in it. For many companies, the added value of a robot or cobot in streamlining production, improving product consistency, or simplifying quality control is enough for them to start investing in robotics.

The most simplest and useful way to determine the value of automating your processes is to calculate the return on investment (ROI) of automation. So, this means the time it takes to recover the initial cost of your investment. This way, you can see whether or not you should invest in a robotics solution in the first place.

Methods to cut costs

There are plenty of other ways to cut costs if you are creative enough. Some things for companies to consider may include: reducing overtime (in order to save on hourly wages), streamlining your production process as much as possible (so that means getting rid of any unnecessary operations), increasing product prices (if possible), or reorganizing or reducing production quality. All these are highly effective ways of reducing costs, but some may be difficult to do so pick the best option suited for your business!

Automation vs outsourcing

Another common alternative to cut costs is outsourcing certain tasks. This means that the companies may choose to have the work done by freelancers, contractors, or a third party, who may be based in a country where wages are lower. However, this also comes with its own set of disadvantages.

For example, it can be tricky to find reliable suppliers who can deliver good quality products for a long period of time. If you produce everything in-house, it may be easier to maintain and control your product’s standard. Also with outsourcing, there may be delays as a result of economic factors or current events. On the other hand, local production is less dependent on this. On the whole, though, there is simply less control over processes and operations that happen in places away from where you are based.

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