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Epicor Insights 2018: Robots a Welcome Addition to the Workforce

Epicor Insights 2018: Robots a Welcome Addition to the Workforce
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Guess that in a way, the band Styx was foresighted when they sang “Domo Arigato, Mr Roboto” all those years back in 1983…

A  findings of the latest research from Epicor Software Corporation show that hey, guess what – Humans are happy to work alongside robots.

While  employers struggling to find people with the skills they need, even for entry-level jobs, industrial workers are increasingly seeing the benefits of working with robots, to improve productivity and relieve the pressures they are under.

Apparently 54% say robots automate repetitive or mundane work that they would otherwise have to do themselves, and 34% agrees that robots are more efficient than humans in the workplace.

It’s not just their efficiency that makes robots attractive co- workers; a quarter (27%) cited the fact that robots do not get involved in office politics as a benefit of working with machines.

This news (that humans are happy to work alongside robots) is good news for employers that want to use cutting-edge technology, to plug a growing skills gap on their factory floors.

The industrial workforce is getting older, and only a quarter of businesses are currently able to attract recruits with the right knowledge. The use of robots can introduce efficiencies where human resource is low, and they can also encourage young talent into industry—with 33 percent of millennials wanting to work at the cutting edge of new developments.

Other research backs up the discovery that rather than being worried about job losses, workers are actually ready and willing to embrace robot coworkers. For example, the OECD has found that only about one-in-ten jobs are actually at high risk from automation, and Gallup’s latest study shows that only a quarter (23%) of workers are worried about losing their jobs to AI.

Terri Hiskey Vice President, Product Marketing, said, “We are increasingly seeing businesses use the latest in enterprise resource planning (ERP) technology to coordinate and inform robot activities. Far from workers worrying about their jobs being taken by robots, our study shows that employees are actually very happy to work alongside machines.”

Modern ERP platforms unleash innovation and growth

In order to make the most of the latest innovations in workplace robotics and AI, businesses need to have the right infrastructure in place—one that fits their business and industry. Cloud-based enterprise resource planning (ERP) solutions like Epicor ERP can be crucial to coordinating robot workflows and sharing data between machines and humans across multiple digital platforms. Indeed, around a fifth (19%) of businesses questioned in the Epicor study said they rely on a single core business system to manage everything.

Terri Hiskey, vice president, product marketing, manufacturing, at Epicor said, “The study shows us that the use of robots is a very real, but also very welcome way of solving an otherwise worrying industry-wide knowledge and skills gap. Businesses need the right infrastructure at their heart if they are to manage data flows effectively and to make the most of robotics and AI. This is where ERP and the cloud come into their own.

“Far from workers worrying about their jobs being taken by robots, our study shows that employees are actually very happy to work alongside machines. With all the advantages of robots not getting involved in office politics too, we can expect to see more of this in the future” concluded Hiskey.

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