Manufacturing
Article

3 Steps to Embracing Flexible Automation

by
World Economic Forum
July 8, 2022
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Summary

Our partners at the World Economic Forum share some important considerations around flexible manufacturing and why embracing these practices are more important than ever.

If the last two years have taught us anything, it’s that flexibility has become more of a priority for nearly everyone. Flexibility is about choice, embracing innovation and alternative operating methods so our daily lives can become more efficient, more effective, and more satisfying. So why has this simple concept – flexibility – eluded the manufacturing sector for so many years?

The idea of “flexibility as a competitive advantage” has existed in manufacturing for several decades now. Companies have tried to cross-train human workers, so people weren’t constrained to a specific line. They created a common product platform or chassis so that multiple variations of a product could be made in a single plant. They distributed their production across various facilities, so they weren’t overly reliant on one particular factory or one single country.

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World Economic Forum
World Economic Forum

The World Economic Forum is the International Organization for Public-Private Cooperation. The Forum engages the foremost political, business, cultural and other leaders of society to shape global, regional and industry agendas. It was established in 1971 as a not-for-profit foundation and is headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland. It is independent, impartial and not tied to any special interests. The Forum strives in all its efforts to demonstrate entrepreneurship in the global public interest while upholding the highest standards of governance. Moral and intellectual integrity is at the heart of everything it does.

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