A new year brings new opportunities in the exciting industries of automation and robotics. As the applications for automation continue to multiply, 2023 will no doubt introduce many cutting-edge discoveries and advancements. At Zaic Design LLC, we strive to stay on top of all these trends, so we can continue to be adaptable and offer our clients valuable guidance! For better or worse, the global economy is always changing, affecting all our business. Here are some of the most important trends to watch out for this year, so you can make the most of 2023!

The Factors Influencing Automation Trends

Before we really dive into these trends, it is best to understand the most important factors that are driving them in the first place. The global economy has always been dynamic, but after decades of globalized supply chains, ground-breaking scientific developments, changes in population, and a worldwide pandemic, the pace of change has never been faster. All these factors come together to make automation increasingly necessary for success and more accessible to a wide variety of companies and business leaders.   

A Shrinking Pool of Workers

One of the primary factors encouraging further automation of the manufacturing industry is the shrinking pool of skilled labor that many countries are seeing. Many nations, that have been historically integral to the global economy, like Japan and China, have begun to see their populations decline and most countries are seeing a significant slowdown in growth. It is now expected that, by the end of this century, the global population may even begin to decline.

This has led to a situation where any labor, especially skilled labor, has a higher demand than supply. In some cases, there is even a large enough workforce to fill all the open positions, but the required expertise or specialized knowledge is hard to find. To compensate for these transitions, warehouse automation trends and smart factories are tending toward high-efficiency, data-driven set ups, that require less human oversight and fewer manual tasks.

Increased Investment Opportunities

Another factor that is helping automation to thrive is the recent realization that investments in automated technologies are often extremely lucrative. As savvy business people and venture capitalists around the world invest in automation, it creates knock-on effects and market growth that encourages further investment by others. This has led to many sectors, like automakers and the burgeoning space exploration industry, obtaining the revenue needed to focus on research and development, artificial intelligence, deep learning, automation, and advanced manufacturing techniques.

More Affordable Technology and Materials

The third factor that is motivating faster adoption of automation is the decreasing cost of technologies and materials. Economies of scale have helped build supply chains that make high-tech components more affordable and accessible than ever. With a focus on modularity and interchangeability, many industries are finding that whole suites of advanced technologies are now in reach. Also developing technologies, like soft robotics make use of flexible plastics and additive manufacturing (like 3D printing), which are often less expensive and faster to produce, as compared to metal or electronic components.

Even at a personal scale, more affordable drones, low-code application platforms, and robot building kits are helping inspire the next generation of automation scientists and engineers, who will likely build on today’s trends.

The 3 Main Automation Trends in 2023

It is exciting to see how quickly automation technology is expanding into more industries and becoming even more accessible! As with any investment, it is always the most beneficial to get in early and grow with new technologies. The growth of automation is no different. It is important to keep looking ahead to try and capitalize on breakthrough discoveries, seeing how they could improve your business’ efficiency and productivity.

Now that we better understand the causes of this year’s main automation trends, let’s dive into the trends themselves. Here is what we expect to see in 2023:

Trend 1: Process Automation

This year, we can anticipate further developments in the sector of process automation. Robotic process automation focuses on using automation tools to complete specific tasks that are critical to achieving your organization’s goals. These automated processes can come in many forms, including mobile robots, cobots (collaborative robots), automation platforms, and the Internet of Things. At Zaic Design, we can help you automate your manufacturing processes so you can reach your goals with less expense and fewer headaches. We will meet with you to determine exactly what your company is trying to accomplish. Then, we design an automated solution that will best fit into your company’s current routines or can help establish new, more efficient processes.

Trend 2: Process Visualization

In 2023, we can also expect to see advancements in process visualization. Process visualization is concerned with workflows and how to make them more streamlined and easier to understand. Often, a company will want to do a thorough study of their current manufacturing processes, so they can determine what changes will have the most influence. In many cases, this process will include physical prototyping, which could come in the form of 3D prints. Zaic Design has multiple 3D printers, which we can employ to help you further develop a concept or create parts for a working automation prototype. We will also help you by writing process flow charts, so your employees can more quickly understand and operate the automated systems we can build.

Trend 3: Artificial Intelligence

Another trend that is already creating a lot of buzz in 2023 is AI or Artificial Intelligence. Perhaps this category needs little introduction as it has been a topic of interest for decades and recently software, like ChatGPT, has been making headlines nearly every day. Like in many other disciplines, artificial intelligence is becoming more and more integrated with manufacturing, allowing for increased production capacity, higher degrees of precision, and improved safety conditions. Subsets of artificial intelligence, like machine learning, allow machines and the software that drives them, to gather information from their environments and improve their own performance. At Zaic Design, we still believe in a human touch and personally tailor our automated solutions to meet the needs of the business leaders that contact us. However, we take full advantage of machine learning, like when we implement specialized analog sensors and PID loops into our robots, allowing them to train themselves in real-time, using data gathered directly in factory conditions.

The Overview

2023 is still young and the trends that are developing this year are likely to expand even further in the future. As a business, one of the keys to staying relevant and profitable is keeping up with the trends that you can efficiently leverage to your advantage. Fortune 500 companies and other successful businesses are implementing automation and realizing the benefits by keeping pace with all the exciting new developments in this industry. Integrating automation into your business can help:

  • Implement safer practices, by letting automated machines handle dangerous materials, hazardous environments, or repetitive tasks.
  • Reduce labor costs by minimizing the need for human intervention and fill positions that are difficult to staff.
  • Save on material expenses by improving precision and cutting down on mistakes.
  • Maintain a steady pace to help reach deadlines and production goals.
  • Improve your equipment reliability by upgrading to the most modern specifications.
  • Deepen your understanding of your business applications through more comprehensive, real-time data collection.
  • Refine your records of manufacturing procedures. If a part is made precisely by an automated solution, there is rarely second guessing about how it was produced, when it needs to be made again.
  • Make use of clean technologies by replacing high emission machines with automated workcells that run on electricity.
  • Impress your clients, when they see advanced automated machines at your facility.
  • Fulfill your vision. By interconnecting equipment and updating it with real-time data feedback, you can remove communication barriers and gain improved access to your operations.

Your Business can be Cutting Edge

Here at Zaic Design LLC, we are eager to help you further automate your manufacturing process or even begin your first venture with automation! We believe that companies of all sizes can benefit from automation – we have seen it first-hand. We invite you to read more about us and see what our clients are saying about our work. Give us a call. We will work with you to determine your business’ specific needs, design an automated solution to fit, build and test that solution and integrate it into your facility. Reach out today, so your business can be a trend setter in 2024.


Leave a Reply

Avatar placeholder

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *