Robotization vs. Lean Management
Harmony of reciprocity of interactions, or what the lean method of 100 years ago has in common with modern solutions.
Table of Contents
- Trend – robotisation and automation of processes
- How does robotisation link to Lean Management?
- Przykłady rozwiązań leanowych w robotyzacji procesów
1. Trend – robotisation and automation of processes
Robotization and automation of production processes is one of the current market trends, which can also be seen in Polish companies. Companies investing in the robotization of workstations according to the lean concept expect a return in the form of increased production efficiency and shorter lead times, improved quality of manufactured parts and freeing employees from heavy or monotonous tasks. The robotic workstation must also be characterized by flexibility, which makes it possible to efficiently changeover production and generate an assortment tailored to customer orders.
2. How does robotisation link to Lean Management?
Robotization and the concept of Lean Management interact with each other, enabling an optimal and stable production process, eliminating unnecessary activities. It is also worth noting that robotization makes it possible to collect comprehensive information about the entire process performed at the workplace and the problems that occur during production. Thanks to this, managers are able to draw valuable conclusions and improve the production process on an ongoing basis.
Robotization is undoubtedly a solution with great potential, enabling manufacturing companies to reduce costs and increase the quality of manufactured products. However, it is important to remember that, like any improvement tool, it requires a prudent approach from planning to implementation to maintenance. The introduction of robotization is only possible if, at an earlier stage of the company’s development, the management has planned and implemented measures derived from the Lean Management concept. Otherwise, unprepared workstations and unstructured processes will not bear the weight of robotization-related changes, as well as fail to produce the expected results.
3. Examples of LEAN solutions in process robotisation
An example is the introduction of autonomous trucks (AGVs) in a company, whose task is to move material between production areas. What should be prepared in order to be able to operate smoothly when implementing such a solution? First of all, it is necessary to look at how production planning is organized in this area. How does the next process “know”, or if we have a suction system implemented, where does the previous process get information about what it will do next. In the next step we also need to find the answer to the question: what size of packaging we will transport, whether they are standard, what is the size of the production batch of individual products. Without this information, we will not be able to determine the frequency of movement and the number of autonomous trucks needed in a given area. It is also necessary to standardize the place (pallet/rack) from which the transported assortment will be taken and placed. Let’s remember that an autonomous cart will not move the piled material away and will not “guess” on which shelf it lies.
Are you thinking about implementing robotic processes in your company? Do you want to prepare for these activities effectively? We invite you to cooperate with us. We will conduct implementation workshops at your company.