How Robots Save and Improve Jobs

By Jeff Burnstein, ATC, RIAAIA, MCA President

Jeff Burnstein, RIA President, Robotic Industries AssociationIn today’s economy, robots are exactly what the doctor ordered to improve the health of the economy and keep jobs at home. Fear of displacement from robotics and automation is misplaced in today’s global marketplace.

What should really give workers pause is when their companies won’t use robots and other automated technologies to become stronger global competitors.

Take for example Marlin Steel Wire, a small business on the U.S. East Coast. They epitomize any company with a global imprint. They export. They win business in Singapore and China. They compete against big companies in low-wage countries and win. They do it with robots but they put people irst.

Now look at a big company like Harley-Davidson. They use robots to cut costs and improve quality. Workers are their best assets, and robots and automation free their people to add more value with ideas and innovation (same as Marlin).

Any country and any industry can apply the same approach: put people first and compete on the basis of innovation. Let automation do the dull or risky jobs.

To see more details, including wage comparisons and cost justification considerations see the whole story on the Automate 2011 website at

Automate 2011 is March 21-24, 2011, at McCormick Place North in Chicago, Illinois. Co-located with the show is ProMat, North America’s premier material handling and logistics show. Make plans not to attend! (Register at:


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