Why Assembly Plants Will Always Need the Human Touch

When it comes to jobs that require high levels of repetition, robots and other programmable machines are much more efficient and cost-effective than human workers. For most large manufacturing companies, this has been the underlying reason for automation in plants and factories across the globe. The loss of many manufacturing jobs to machines or robots is definitely on the rise and will continue to grow, but despite what most people think, there will always be a need for human hands, eyes, and ears in manufacturing.

Why the human touch is still necessary
Until the day comes where we have androids or robots that can think independently, creatively, and have the dexterity of human beings, there will always be a need for the human touch in the manufacturing process. One reason that plant workers will remain in the industry is customization. This is particularly true for automotive manufacturing. While many plants have increased the number of robots and automation in the manufacturing vehicles in the past 15 years, the number of plant workers has only declined by 8 percent. With the ever-changing market for newer and more customized vehicles, the cost of reprogramming robots to perform a new or different task can become more expensive than workers.

While it may be more cost-effective and safer for robots to perform certain tasks in manufacturing, many jobs are just more suited to the human touch. There will undoubtedly be many jobs given over to automation as robots and computers become more complex, but many large manufacturers are realizing that performance and productivity rely on a balance between machines and people.