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despite labor shortages, u.s. productivity highest it’s ever been

in rethinking robotics by Jim Lawton

Collaborative robots like Sawyer and Baxter from Rethink Robotics help in manufacturing productivity.

Productivity increased in nine manufacturing industries in 2015, as output increased in 12 industries and hours worked fell in seven industries (source: Bureau of Labor Statistics).

Interestingly, robot sales have also risen: According to the International Federation of Robotics, 2015 saw a 15% increase in sales, the largest ever. The top countries for robot sales include China, the Republic of Korea, Japan, the US, and Germany.

Does this mean robots are killing jobs? Not at all. What it means is that robots, especially collaborative robots like Sawyer and Baxter, are allowing manufacturers, such as Tag Team Manufacturing, to take on high volume production gigs without having to hire more people.

For more headlines, videos and news about collaborative robots and manufacturing automation, check out the rest of the Rethink Robotics blog or drop by Cobot Central. Also, subscribe above to receive the next Cobot Recap and other blog post alerts delivered right to your inbox.

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About the Author

Jim Lawton

Jim had a choice upon graduating from Tufts University – chase a dream as a concert pianist or become part of the inaugural Leaders for Manufacturing Program at MIT. He chose the latter– dedicating his career to developing and delivering innovative solutions that improve the business of manufacturing. Internally at HP, and then at breakthrough start-ups in e-commerce, inventory optimization and supply chain risk management, Jim’s never once looked back. His charter today: capture the power of data and analytics to push the standard for world-class manufacturing higher—once again.



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