The robot’s arm performs a simple, repetitive task: it picks up the metal in a press, and then folds the metal into a new shape. And as a human, a robot worker is paid for the hours he works.
Jose Figueroa, who oversees Polar mechanical engineering, says the robot, which was rented from a company called Formic, costs about $ 8 an hour, compared with a minimum wage of $ 15 per hour. Sending the robot allowed the worker to perform various tasks, increasing the output, Figueroa says.
Says Figueroa: “Smaller companies sometimes suffer because they do not have the resources to use the latest technology.” “We are struggling to make ends meet.”
The fact that Polar did not have to pay $ 100,000 in advance to buy the robot, and spend a lot of money to repair it, was significant. Figueroa says he wants to see 25 robots in a row within five years. He has no plans to fire 70 employees at the company, but says Polar will not need to hire new employees.
Formic buys standard robotic tools, and leases them along with its own software. They are part of a small but growing group of robots that enter the workplace for pay.
The plague has caused lack of staff in many industries, but many small companies do not want to write large automation checks.
“Anything that can help reduce the number of employees or the need for employees is obviously an increase at this point,” says Steve Chmura, the company’s chief operating officer. Georgia Nut, a cookie company in Skokie, Illinois, which has been struggling to find staff and rent robots in Formic.
The robot-like-employee approach can help spread to small businesses rapidly through economic transformation. Companies like Formic see an opportunity to create big business by serving many small companies. Many are using the mines they collect to help improve their business and to improve customer performance.
Shahan Farshchi, a businessman in Formic, compares the current situation with the computer system of pre-departure computers, while only the richest companies could afford to use high-tech computers that require a lot of expertise in design and maintenance. Personal computers were backed by companies including Intel and Microsoft which made the technology cheaper and easier to use. “We’re going in right now with the robots,” Farshchi says.
Robots have been introducing new features in recent years where technology has become more efficient and easier to use. Some hospitals use robots to deliver goods and some offices use robotic guards. The companies that make the robots usually rent them out.
Jeff Burnstein, President of Association for Advancing Automation, the corporate body, says the rise in the need for small businesses creates robotic interest as a profession. The process has seen a special impact among warehouse companies, Burnstein says.