But jobs are being automated because cheap labor exists elsewhere and places with high labor costs have to do it to keep those jobs. Automation isn't the job killer, it's the method to save what can still be saved. I'm a controls engineer, who integrates and programs these operator replacing robots. If it wasn't for automation, more jobs would be lost due to cheaper manufacturing costs. The problem isn't automation, automation is the answer to an existing problem. If you can really call it a problem. Companies want to make money and customers want to pay less, so companies have to find ways to save money. Cheap labor is an answer, and automation is the answer for places without cheap labor.
Edited, Oct 20th 2013 8:16am by TirithRR
No, automation kills jobs. Period. In no way anywhere in the world does automation not remove jobs. I understand what you are saying by making our facilities more productive we would save jobs. But as a control technician as well, I have watched automation remove more jobs than relocation. Now why do I say that despite jobs moving on mass out of Canada and the US in manufacturing. When they come back out automation still limits the jobs.
When a line moves from the US (or Canada) to Mexico the automation goes with it. My supervisor set up the line in Mexico for the EXACT same process as we ran here. It requires the same number of people, and produces the same number of frames. We lost 60 jobs to that line. When and if it comes back the Maximum amount of jobs we can expect is 60, because the process was designed for 20 people to run over 3 rotating shifts. In 1998 that exact same process had 100 people over 3 shifts, 40 jobs ELIMINATEDbecause we had robots come in instead of people. This exact line was recreated in Mexico, making the EXACT same product. If those jobs ever come back it will be the same 60 jobs coming back unless its been further automated since its left, requiring less people.
Automation does not save jobs. It removes jobs entirely from the industry. All over the world. A job done by a robot is a job that will never be done by a human in any part of the world ever again.
Why....because it costs less to make a robot do it. in any nation on this entire planet. Jobs we eliminate by designing automation are jobs that are no longer needed...period. Automation does not save jobs, it didn't save jobs in Canada/US before they moved out, it didn't save jobs in new plants in cheap locations, and it won't magically add jobs if/when they return to NA. Using Robots is done to eliminate humans. Period. Edited, Oct 20th 2013 8:19pm by rdmcandie