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Finishing, Dispensing, and Filtration Industrial Products Group Automotive

New Year Trends in Finishing and Robotics

By OTC Insights Team on December 28, 2023

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OTC Insights Team

Established in 1963, OTC Industrial Technologies is one of the largest industrial distributors & service providers in the United States. We're committed to seeing industrial operations advance through expert technical solutions & unmatched support using our years of experience.

As 2023 ends, we have an opportunity to review the incredible advancements made in the robotics and finishing industry this year and look toward new and emerging trends that could define 2024.  

Every year brings advancements in technology, increases in efficiency, and more environmentally safe practices. Position your production team for success by looking ahead and planning how to optimize and increase efficiency.  

Here are a few finishing and robotics trends to watch for in 2024. 

Boost production efficiency with your robotics strategy. Click here.

Robotics Provides Powerful Benefits for Finishing and Dispensing

Continual advancements have made robotics an incredibly powerful tool for finishing and dispensing. Today, the industry recognizes that robotics is a mature technology. A mature technology is one that the initial faults and limitations have been iterated on enough to be considered solved. It’s a technology that is trustworthy.

For manufacturers, this means automation and robotic equipment are more reliable than ever. It's easy to use and can better adapt to your production needs. There’s less risk of failure and downtime, and you can more easily manage and use the system, providing a true, measurable advantage to production and mitigating workforce requirements.  

In addition, as the science and engineering behind robotics have advanced, the systems have become less expensive and more efficient. Today, you will realize an ROI (return on investment) much sooner and more easily. If you were apprehensive about adopting an automated system in the past, then this is the year to reevaluate your robotics and automation strategy.  

Robotics Continues to Mitigate Workforce Issues for Manufacturers 

As manufacturers around the country deal with an ongoing labor crisis, many have discovered that automated systems can alleviate workforce challenges. 

Today, manufacturers see automation and robotics as a benefit to production. A lack of available workers is causing production shutdowns and late shipments, so manufacturers are turning to robotics to mitigate this problem. Many manufacturers cite the following benefits after implementing an automated or robotic system. 

Improved Working Conditions  

Finishing operations are demanding, and challenging. Robotics makes finishing work easier and more attractive for new workers. Automation can also reduce the stress and difficulty of finishing. Workers tend to enjoy the work in shops with finishing automation and robotics more than those without. 

Reduced Cost and Increased Reliability  

Even with the best team, there is risk in relying on employees alone. A worker can get sick, or quit, which can lead to a workforce deficit and production shutdown. The cost of hiring a new employee can quickly climb between recruiting and training them. In the long run, supplementing finishing operations with automation will increase reliability. Robots don’t get sick and won’t quit. There may be higher initial costs for an automated system, but you’ll see increased reliability and lower work costs in the long run. 

Automated Systems Are Easier to Operate 

As a mature technology, robots have never been easier to operate. Simplified controls and more robust control systems mean you can spend less time training your team on system operation. You won’t need the higher-skilled labor that you did in the past.   

With robotics and automation, each employee's output will increase, which means you will need fewer workers to meet order demand. Your operations will see increased protection against workforce challenges.  

Reduced Environmental Impact and Increased Savings 

This year, more and more manufacturers are looking at automation and robotics for the advantages of cost and reducing environmental impact. The materials costs to operate a finishing system are high. Overspray waste in your paint booth can result in significant losses over time. That overspray can also be an environmental hazard. Additionally, waste can increase wear on filters, leading to more frequent replacement. It means more downtime for cleaning and more challenges for your team. 

An automated paint system replaces inefficient spray guns and manual paint application and can drastically reduce overspray and waste. This can reduce environmental impact and risk, reduce waste, and reduce the need for frequent filter changes. As the public and manufacturing leaders look at ways to increase environmental awareness, they will continue to adopt robotics in finishing.   

Reach Your Finishing and Automation Goals with OTC 

It’s a new year, which means new opportunities and new challenges for manufacturers.  

Get ahead of the challenges with OTC. We not only offer products from leading robotics and automation suppliers, but we match that with experts in finishing systems and robotic applications. We aim to ensure you get the most from your investment, regardless of your industry or need.  

We’re ready to work with you. Contact us today for expert recommendations on products for your facility and experts who can work with you to improve the overall efficiency and profitability of your operation.