Robots Taking Jobs? Slow Down. Let’s Talk About Why They Are Good For The Warehouse Workforce

So you’re thinking about adding Autonomous Mobile Robots (AMRs) to your warehouse. You’ve also likely heard all about robots taking over jobs from hard-working humans, so you are a bit hesitant. The robots taking jobs problem is almost certainly not as bad as you may have heard, but it’s still important to consider what kind of impact AMRs will have on your employees. Fortunately, AMRs will make your business more efficient in ways that your employees will appreciate, since the AMRs will also be making their jobs safer, easier, and more fulfilling. Here are three reasons AMRs are actually good for the warehouse workforce — and not a sign of the robot apocalypse or a nightmare come to life for luddites. 

REASON #1: AMRs Mitigate Forklift Accidents and Injury

Safety is a primary concern in any warehouse. Nearly 100K forklift injuries occur each year in the United States. Every three days, a warehouse worker dies in a forklift accident. With people and forklifts working together in heavily trafficked areas, accidents are unfortunately inevitable. However, when AMRs take over a substantial amount of material transit, they protect workers from many of those dangerous interactions. Of course, forklifts aren’t the only thing that can make warehouse workers jobs difficult and potentially lead to injury…

REASON #2: AMRs Ease Back Injuries, Knee Injuries and Overall Wear-and-Tear on the Body

In warehouses around the globe, back and knee injuries are very common due to repetitive lifting and the hours of walking involved in tasks like picking. Even without an acute injury, wear-and-tear on the body can make the job of a warehouse employee quite unpleasant, especially for older adults. Automation of heavy carrying via material handling AMRs translates to workers spending less time tired and sore.

REASON #3: AMRs Allow Warehouse Pickers to Focus on Higher-Level Tasks

Introducing AMRs in warehouse environments reduces picker travel time and in turn allows them to focus on higher-level tasks for the business that both increase warehouse productivity rates and improve warehouse efficiency — all while working alongside people. For companies that specifically deploy Fetch Robotics solutions, such human/robotic collaborative work scenarios help warehousing organizations see ROI on their robotic investment in as fast as three-to-six months.

Once AMRs are deployed in a warehouse, it typically takes about a week for workers to understand they are there to help them and make their jobs easier. Once this occurs, workers become enthusiastic proponents of their new assistants. The “will robots take my job” question fades away as the AMRs become recognized as teammates rather than competition, and make workforces more efficient, profitable and healthier, all at the same time. 

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If you would like to learn more about how Fetch Robotics’ material handling and automated data collection solutions can improve throughput, efficiency, and productivity in your facility, please fill out the form below.