The following report is based on how organizations in the information technology industry leveraging robots as their significant of product of developing the business and gaining competitive advantage. The report discusses the organizations manufacturing robotic technologies top the market irrespective of increasing market challenges and ethical government strict regulations on the use of report. The report also highlights how robotic technology can be marketed dealing with all challenges. The following report is conducted considering the information provided in the case study about an Artificial Intelligence company located in Brisbane. As robotic technologies have tremendously gained popularity across the world, the company grows the interest in using robotic technologies in different field such as transportation, manufacturing and mining. Even though, the current business of the company is not unsatisfactory whatsoever, it is essential for the company to think of growing the business with a product that enables the company easily penetrate in the market. Most importantly, the focus on robotics might remain sustainable as technology is widely embraced by the entire universe. The technology has certainly increased the access of humans to anything that remained impossible for years.
However, though Artificial Intelligence has significant opportunity to expand the business with sustainable strategies, there are certain barriers like government regulations, ethical consideration, security and others that company must needs to address and resolve. The biggest apprehension of companies manufacturing robots is unfavourable government backed by political ground (Qureshi & Syed, 2014). The government emphasizes on the fact that excessive use of robots could negatively influence the employment of the nation. The government raise the concern regarding the balance between the use of technology and the human. On the other side, due to the technological acceptance, the organizations using robots as their competency are rapidly increasing, which remains as the challenge for Artificial Intelligence Company. Thus, to provide suitable suggestions to the company, the study investigates the factors that influence the market in terms of robotic technologies. Likewise, it investigates how the competitors in the industry dealing with the market barriers and gaining profits. An in-depth analysis has been provided in the following that reveals the key ideas useful for Artificial Intelligence Company in Brisbane in terms of the use of robots to gain competitive advantage.
Definition and use of robotic technology
Robots remain as the realty on factory assembly lines for over two decades but only in the recent time robots have become advanced enough penetrate into domestic context as well as office setting. As put forward by Belekoukias, Garza-Reyes & Kumar (2014) the robotic industry has been a surging market, where multi-billion dollar global market led by industrial logistic use, has started to observe a significant shift towards new buyers and office application. In this context, Siciliano and Khatibm (2016) commented that there might be $1.5 billion market for the consumers as well as the business robots by 2020.
A robot is a programmable mechanical device that could implement the task as well as interact with the environment without the aid of human interaction. As put forward by Brossog, Bornschlegl and Franke (2015), robotics is the science and technology behind the design, application of robots and manufacturing. The robots carry a variety of modern day uses and these uses can be categorized into three major areas such as industrial robots (manufacturing), robots in research and robots in educations. Thus, the organizations that sell robots have access to these three areas for marketing and promoting their products.
Industrial robots-In industry, there are several jobs that need high extent of speed as well as precision. For many decades, the humans took responsibilities for all those jobs. Taking the advantage of technology, numerous industrial processes can be sped up as well as performed with the high extent of precision through the use of robots (Qureshi & Syed, 2014). These jobs include manufacturing, transporting, packaging, painting and many more. Therefore, many organizations in the manufacturing and other companies that use robots are given in the following.
Blue River Technology Company in Agriculture- The company has developed more than $ million to increase a robot that identifies the major problem in agriculture. The robot eliminates the weeds without including herbicideas to food crops by genetically modifying the seeds (Emmi et al., 2013). As the consequence, the farmers’ observe a significant growth in the profit margin as due to quality of food crops which is better for health.
Figure 1: Use of robots in agriculture
(Source: Emmi et al., 2013)
Quiet Logistic-The Company Quiet Logistic currently uses a robot called Petite Locus Robot, which works alongside human in the warehouse to retrieve as well as seal orders (Angerer et al., 2012). The CEO of Quiet Logistic has mentioned that they are expecting an increase of productivity in the warehouse by 800%.
Figure 2: Petite Locus Robot at Quiet Logistic
(Source: Angerer et al., 2012)
Best Buy’s Chloe- Chloe shifts through music, movies and game. It helps the customers that what want in the warehouse. This technology has not been used by other firms in the retail industry. When the buyers enter in a movie they want on a kiosk, the robot grabs what the buyers require in 30 seconds (Carreras et al., 2013). This robot completely eliminates the need for search.
Figure 3: Chloe at Best Buy
(Source: Carreras et al., 2013)
Robot in Mining (Super-Droid Robots)- The below provided image of the robot was developed for mining to drive into abandoned mineshafts to look for potash leftover from decades ago. The Super- Droid robots developed the platform to carry the camera equipment as well as series of other sensors to receive the feedback (Nithya & Sumathi 2012)
Figure 4: Super- Droid Robot in mining
(Source: Nithya & Sumathi 2012)
Robots in transportation- In the present days, the automotive sector records around $2 trillion revenue each year (Dietz et al., 2012). For example, Google’s self driving cars have driven for 1.5 million mines completely autonomously and safely (Simonite, 2013). Another certain thing is, robotic cars do not drink, do not text and do not fall asleep at the wheel. Thus, the risk of accident remains very less. In addition, the robotic cars do not need parking spaces, as it automatically squeezes. As put forward by Huckaby, Vassos and Christensen (2013), the demand of robots in car transportation is significantly high compared to other industry.
Scope of the organization
The above-mentioned analysis helps to learn that almost each industry across the world have become accustomed with the use of robotic technology. The organizations are decreasing their cost of operation such as replacing human with technology. Especially, the transportation and agriculture industry has effectively used robots and gained necessary advantages. However, while focusing on Asian market, it has been observed that almost 58% of all salaried employees in Indonesia, Philippine, Cambodia might be displaced by automation and advanced technology (Brondon, 2014). In addition to this, the emerging market like India has the highest productivity due to the mass young population. Therefore, the government of the nation might not expect robots to be used in the manufacturing or any other sectors, as it could decrease the employment of opportunity.
As put forward by Huckaby, Vassos and Christensen (2013) in the manufacturing industry of India such as pipe and pipe manufacturing, FMCG products manufacturing, robots rapidly handle the task, which was previously done by the low skilled employees. Nonetheless, the government and the organizations are intended to educate as well as train the employees for new high-tech jobs. This initiative could benefit all since it increases productivity as well as the wages. Nevertheless, Artificial Intelligence Company wanting to expand in Asian market with the competency of ICT might have to deal with the challenges, as the organizations and nations in Asia that rely on the low-cost labour as their major competitive advantage might not take the risk of using robots. This is because the global economy might fall behind.
However, in Australia, Artificial Intelligence company has the significant opportunity to get into the market as the country has widely embraced the use of robots in each sector. In addition, the Australia is technologically developed and it mostly relies on technology in big mining operation and transportation. Australian population is lesser than Asian regions, which is probably the significant reason for the increasing acceptance of robots. The case study indicates Artificial Intelligence company wants to expand its business in Australia focusing on ICT as the core competency of gaining competitive advantage. Thus, it can be added that organization will be able to implement the initiatives due to the acceptance of technology in the region. Nevertheless, West (2015) commented that an increasing acceleration in automation technology involving the cheaper and more advanced robotic technologies could observe nearly 5 million Australians lose their jobs.
Especially, the artificial intelligence sector in Australia observed a rapid growth in the technology. (Brady, Gerhardt & Davidson, 2012) added that nearly 700 industrial robots are imported into Australia on an annual basis as well as more than 1 million are at work from several years across different industries. Thus, to remain competitive in Australian market, Artificial Intelligence Company needs to focus on using the robots that have not been used by other firms in the industry. Due to prospect for manufacturing in Australia as well as the difficulties in economy dominated by small and medium size firms, the reasons for optimism exist. Regardless of all challenges, a new generation of lightweight and assistive robots are expected to provide SMEs with several new options to enhance its competitive advantages and deal with the challenges of high cost and a deficiency of skilled workforce. Thereby, the idea of expanding the operation focussing on ICT remains as the scope for the company to gain competitive advantage in the new market. On the other side, to remain competitive in Asian market, it is necessary for Artificial Intelligence Company to use the robotics that requires human skills to use. Thus, the company could keep the balance between the use of technology and the human resource.
Advantage and disadvantage of using robotic technology
Advantage of using robotic technology
- The robots could go down into the undiscovered places, where the humans will be crushed. The robotic technologies deliver information that humans cannot access. These technologies work 24/7 without break and salary. This helps to the organizations to control the cost of operation. As mentioned by Sauppe and Mutlu (2015) the robots are cost effective as well as time effective.
- The robotic technologies could carry out the task with highest rapidity than humans. The technologies work much more consistently as well as accurately. For example, the robotic pets entertain patients to keep them out of stress.
- Reduces the cost of production- The organizations could receive a quick return on investment, which could outweighs the initial establishment cost (Pan et al., 2012). The robots finish the task quite rapidly, which has positive impact on the production.
- Shorter cycle duration- A lean manufacturing line is embedded in the robots which improve the efficiency. Moreover, it is observed that an automated robot has the capability to work constant speed without pausing for breaks, which increases to potential tom produce more than human (Gwiazda et al., 2015).
- Enhance quality and reliability- With the help of programming, the applications are performed with high repeatability and precision each time. The technology ensures that the product is produced with same and equal specification.
- Enhanced safety- Robots enhances safety as the workers are moved to supervisory roles where they no longer have to perform hazardous operation.
Disadvantage of using robotic technology
- Loss of employment- The significant issue with using robotic technologies are the loss of jobs of massive population. Particularly, the robots have destroyed the vast range of middle class jobs in many sectors such as automobile industry (West, 2015). Thus, government of many nations have raised the concern of limiting the use of robotic technologies.
- Lack of intelligence- As robots do not have additional intelligence, they can never enhance the results of the task they perform outside of their pre-defined programming.
- Cost of regular maintenance- The organizations need to calculate the cost of robotic automation in light business. The use of such technology could sometimes cost a lot of money, which could be larger than the financial budget (Huckaby, Vassos & Christensen, 2013). The regular maintenance of robots requires a huge amount of money.
In conclusion, it can be added that even though, the organizations using robotic technologies in the operation face many barriers, due to the government regulations regarding employment, the world happily embraced the advancement of technology. Thus, by using the unique robotic devices, the company in the new markets will be able to produce more products alongside using the human resource. To remain competitive in the market, the organizations must focus on the productivity; thereby, using robotic technology, the company could speed the productivity within a short time while other firms with human resources might lag behind.
In order to remain competitive in the Australian and Asian market, Artificial Intelligence Company needs to focus on the use of robotic technology in transportation. The entire world is highly concerned about the environmental pollution caused by excessive use of fuels. Thus, Artificial Intelligence firm needs to focus on developing robotic cars that are fuel efficient with the help of high-tech electronics to guide drivers in a wide variety of ways. The robotic vehicles could interact with each other through traffic signals and roads. The company needs to incorporate vision enhancement devices in the robotic trucks to navigate through the bad weather. This will help the drivers to learn the expected collision with a pedestrian. The robotic cars should be developed in way that warns the drivers when they are drowsy. The Artificial Intelligence should poise to change the way people use the cars in road. The artificial intelligence should be poised in a way that cars with radio signals, sensors as well as cameras navigate through the roads which reduces the chances of accidents. The manufacturing of such vehicles in Australian and Asian market is less or rare. Thus, the company could develop such unique product to penetrate in the market at the initial stage of starting the operation.
Angerer, S., Strassmair, C., Staehr, M., Roettenbacher, M., & Robertson, N. M. (2012, April). Give me a hand—The potential of mobile assistive robots in automotive logistics and assembly applications. In Technologies for Practical Robot Applications (TePRA), 2012 IEEE International Conference on (pp. 111-116). IEEE.
Belekoukias, I., Garza-Reyes, J. A., & Kumar, V. (2014). The impact of lean methods and tools on the operational performance of manufacturing organisations. International Journal of Production Research, 52(18), 5346-5366.
Brady, M., Gerhardt, L., & Davidson, H. F. (Eds.). (2012). Robotics and artificial intelligence (Vol. 11). Springer Science & Business Media.
Brondoni, S. M. (2014). Innovation and Imitation for Global Competitive Strategies. The Corporation Development Models of US, Japan, Korea, and Taiwan. Symphonya. Emerging Issues in Management, (1), 12-27.
Brossog, M., Bornschlegl, M., & Franke, J. (2015). Reducing the energy consumption of industrial robots in manufacturing systems. International Journal of Advanced Manufacturing Technology, 78.
Carreras, A., Morenza-Cinos, M., Pous, R., Melià-Seguí, J., Nur, K., Oliver, J., & De Porrata-Doria, R. (2013, September). STORE VIEW: pervasive RFID & indoor navigation based retail inventory management. In Proceedings of the 2013 ACM conference on Pervasive and ubiquitous computing adjunct publication (pp. 1037-1042). ACM.
Cullinane, S. J., Bosak, J., Flood, P. C., & Demerouti, E. (2013). Job design under lean manufacturing and its impact on employee outcomes. Organizational Psychology Review, 3(1), 41-61.
Dietz, T., Schneider, U., Barho, M., Oberer-Treitz, S., Drust, M., Hollmann, R., & Hägele, M. (2012, May). Programming system for efficient use of industrial robots for deburring in SME environments. In Robotics; Proceedings of ROBOTIK 2012; 7th German Conference on (pp. 1-6). VDE.
Emmi, L., Paredes-Madrid, L., Ribeiro, A., Pajares, G., & Gonzalez-de-Santos, P. (2013). Fleets of robots for precision agriculture: a simulation environment. Industrial Robot: An International Journal, 40(1), 41-58.
Guo, L., & Hariharan, S. (2012). Patients are not cars and staff are not robots: Impact of differences between manufacturing and clinical operations on process improvement. Knowledge and process management, 19(2), 53-68.
Gwiazda, A., Banas, W., Sekala, A., Foit, K., Hryniewicz, P., & Kost, G. (2015). Modular industrial robots as the tool of process automation in robotized manufacturing cells. In IOP Conference Series: Materials Science and Engineering (Vol. 95, No. 1, p. 012104). IOP Publishing.
Huckaby, J., Vassos, S., & Christensen, H. I. (2013, November). Planning with a task modeling framework in manufacturing robotics. In Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS), 2013 IEEE/RSJ International Conference on (pp. 5787-5794). IEEE.
Lange, A., Voigt, M., Vogeler, K., Schrapp, H., Johann, E., & Gümmer, V. (2012). Impact of manufacturing variability and nonaxisymmetry on high-pressure compressor stage performance. Journal of Engineering for Gas Turbines and Power, 134(3), 032504.
Nithya, P., & Sumathi, P. (2012). Novel pre-processing technique for web log mining by removing global noise and web robots. In Computing and Communication Systems (NCCCS), 2012 National Conference on (pp. 1-5). IEEE.
Pan, Z., Polden, J., Larkin, N., Van Duin, S., & Norrish, J. (2012). Recent progress on programming methods for industrial robots. Robotics and Computer-Integrated Manufacturing, 28(2), 87-94.
Qureshi, M. O., & Syed, R. S. (2014). The impact of robotics on employment and motivation of employees in the service sector, with special reference to health care. Safety and health at work, 5(4), 198-202.
Sauppé, A., & Mutlu, B. (2015, April). The social impact of a robot co-worker in industrial settings. In Proceedings of the 33rd Annual ACM Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (pp. 3613-3622). ACM.
Siciliano, B., & Khatib, O. (Eds.). (2016). Springer handbook of robotics. Springer.
Simonite, T. (2013). Data shows Google’s robot cars are smoother, safer drivers than you or I. Technology Review, 25.
West, D. M. (2015). What happens if robots take the jobs? The impact of emerging technologies on employment and public policy. Centre for Technology Innovation at Brookings, Washington DC.
Wilcox, R., Nikolaidis, S., & Shah, J. (2012). Optimization of temporal dynamics for adaptive human-robot interaction in assembly manufacturing. Robotics Science and Systems VIII, 441-448.