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How to Prep for Your Robotic Automation Site Visit

How to Prep for Your Robotic Automation Site Visit

Posted: 2/14/2022 4:25:51 PM by Tom Stocker
Topics: Production, ROI, Tips and Tools

Whether you are considering floorspace optimization through the addition of a standalone robot or a robotic workcell, contacting a robot supplier or integrator to conduct a thorough site audit is a good place to start. This several hour-long process gives an industry expert the chance to meet with your internal stakeholders, listen to your operations supervisors, and study how piece parts or goods are manufactured then packaged at your facility for distribution. All in all, a site audit should provide the knowledge needed to make an informed purchasing decision that aligns with company goals and enhances floorspace workflow to yield transformative benefits.

Prepping for a Site Visit

To gain the most out of your robotic automation site visit, consider preparing with these steps:

Pinpoint Automation Goals
Foremost, it is important to know the key issues that need to be solved. Whether “pain points” revolve around labor shortages, operating costs, manufacturing capacity, product quality or something else, it is paramount for decision makers to have a clear understanding of the requirements that need to be met. Similarly, being able to explain company goals during a plant audit helps a potential partner achieve production objectives with an ideal solution.

Identify Internal Stakeholders
Once goals have been established, it is recommended to form a team of qualified, invested individuals within the organization to take ownership of the robotic implementation. From idea to execution, members of this diverse team should work together to be sure all company goals are satisfied with the system put in place.

Along with this, companies may choose to appoint, or even hire, a “workcell champion” – an employee fully dedicated and accountable for the integration, programming, utilization and maintenance of the robot system. This valuable team member can be instrumental and help garner support from other stakeholders for managing deliverables and meeting deadlines.

Discover Production Bottlenecks
While company leaders should have a pretty good idea for where robotic automation may fit best on the production floor, it can be beneficial to poll internal stakeholders, as well as production employees for their advice. This can help create a comprehensive list of discussion points to address during the site audit. Keep in mind, there is no need to worry about the technical aspects at this point – your robot supplier or integrator should be highly qualified to address those.

Establish Required ROI
Companies should always follow realistic budgets to meet well-defined organizational goals, especially where capital equipment is concerned. Likewise, having a clear understanding of what your business will require regarding return on investment (ROI) is key. From ramp-up time and training, to installation and utilization, analyze what is feasible within your business model. Not only will this serve to implement a solution quickly, but also, it can help meet financial goals within the targeted payback period.

Be Audit Ready
Highly important, the robot expert should have access to the facility during peak operation. Experiencing production flow first-hand is critical to providing the best solution.

The time spent in preparation for a site visit should not return void. Typically, pre-planning helps to create a productive facility discussion and walkthrough that yields actionable insights. From this, the proper robotic solution can be chosen and implemented for greater productivity gains.

To schedule a site visit and learn how robotic automation can positively impact your operations, contact our experts today.

Tom Stocker is a Director of North American Sales

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