The modern age brings with it many questions and issues for people to resolve and ponder in their own way. This might seem straightforward and insular enough when you consider it in a personal sense, but when applied to someone in a position of power, such as you, if you’re behind a business, how you process these questions and answer them carries a degree of consequence.
One such issue is that of the increasing presence of automation, and how it can simultaneously offer those in the manufacturing business a great degree of flexibility and efficiency, while potentially putting people out of work. It’s a difficult situation and one that you must approach in your own way.
Technology and Linear Progression
To many people, this won’t seem so much like something that’s up for debate, and more like something that’s inevitable. As your business grows, you already incorporate newer technologies that cost more money and allow you to achieve more, such as process heating systems that you would use at the industrial level, so how is this any different?
Again, it all comes back to the idea of how it impacts the people involved, but the difficulty arises when taking the more considerate road that might hold your business back. One approach you might take is simply to try and dip into automation without completely overhauling your manual workforce, purposefully limiting how far you go, while also improving your business from what it was before.
Values as Marketing
One way for you to spin this is to use your values as a way to market your business and build your brand up higher than before. In a time when this discussion is in the news and in the spotlight, emerging as a business that aligns itself with human workers might help the public interest in working with and supporting you.
Seeing this as an option, there might be a temptation for some people to try and achieve this while also utilizing automation to improve the efficiency of their business. That would likely be ill-advised, as information spreads quickly, and it won’t be long before that initial public favor turns on you. Sticking to the initial promise, though, might help you to build up a loyal audience.
A similar debate that is happening concurrently is one surrounding artificial intelligence (AI). AI is already used in a wide variety of businesses and systems, and some people might not even be fully aware of how widespread it is, but just like automated machinery, it can play a role in people losing their jobs to roles that can be completed with this intelligence.
This aspect of the debate sometimes gets lost amidst the larger, more existential question of what AI means for humanity in the long term, but you and your business might find that finding your answer to this is important – both for the sake of improving the efficiency of your business and for showcasing your values and how much stock you put in them.