It’s today’s Catch-22, set in a manufacturing shop…maybe your shop. Your customers are asking about automated processes, and you know that robots would make you more competitive. Of course, you want to bid on larger jobs and you need to run more efficiently. The real question is, how can you justify the investment now, rather than later?
Technology Advancements Are Making Robots More Affordable
The same market forces that affect iPhone prices affect robots and equipment. When new technology is released, old(-er) technology gets more affordable. While humans are naturally excited by new technology, most engineers (and most customers), appreciate tried and true solutions.
The obvious way to invest affordably in automation now is to purchase used robots and robot parts. Many shops using pre-owned, reconditioned equipment find it offer benefits in addition to being affordable.
Benefits of Automating with Used Robots and Equipment
While HR managers are quick to point out that the shortage of skilled, experienced labor is a good reason to automate, engineering and production managers will quickly add that the longer that automation has been in use, the more equipped people will be to use it. In other words, buying used robots can have the added benefit of reducing your shop’s learning curve. Need training? See our parent company NRTC Automation.
Speed is another factor that can prove an advantage when you purchase preowned robot parts and automation equipment. Our customers repeatedly tell us that they appreciate having immediate access to robotics, parts and other equipment. Rather than the typical buying process of waiting on a quote and negotiating terms, purchasing quality used equipment from iGAM is as easy as browse, select, then click to buy.
Retrofitting with Reconditioned Parts
Retrofits and upgrades can extend the life of your line and look good on the company’s bottom line. By adding used robots and other pre-owned/reconditioned parts and equipment to their shops, smaller manufacturers are often able to expand, taking on more projects or higher volume jobs with minimal investment. Find more parts here.
Cost Vs. Benefits Analysis
Maybe your organization is committed to automating, but the budget isn’t exactly supportive of that decision. In that case, even a rudimentary cost vs. benefits analysis can help you plan effectively and determine a realistic timeframe to start automating some or all of your processes.
Before purchasing any robotic equipment, be sure to consider both hard and soft costs.
As mentioned above, automating portions of any process requires an upfront investment. However, investing in automation can produce a surprisingly fast ROI. Reducing risks and incidents may not only improve your insurability, but they can also boost both worker morale and productivity.
The common myth says robots are taking the “good” jobs from qualified workers. However, oftentimes, when manufacturing processes are automated, job satisfaction increases while accidents and turnover rates decrease. See Robots in Manufacturing: Myths and Misconceptions
Buying new robots may prove a big selling factor to some customers but many manufacturers are not factoring the cost of training employees to operate new equipment and hiring new talent down the road. At iGAM, we provide hands-on training at our site or at your location through our sister company, NRTC Automation. From basic programming to advanced troubleshooting, we have the experience to not only transfer knowledge but empower your team with the skillset and assurance to solve any technical issues independently. Learn more about our robotics training program here
Before opting for used or pre-owned equipment, many manufacturers and machine shops are concerned about maintenance and the potential need for replacement parts. While every setup is different, in most cases, over time, the total investment proves far less than the cost of buying new equipment.
There are countless factors to consider when you’re planning on automating or adding robots to any process in your organization. Hesitating, however, can prove even more costly. Don’t wait - get the information and equipment you need. iGAM experts are available to help answer your industrial automation questions.
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Do you have questions about replacement robot parts? Retrofitting a line? Planning for upcoming automation needs? iGAM specializes in providing convenient access to affordable, quality used and reconditioned robot parts and other equipment that small- to medium-sized manufacturing customers need.