INTRODUCTION TO THE EFFECTS OF TECHNOLOGY ON MANUAL JOBS - Essay Example

Nonetheless, the current workforce composition has changed immensely because of the expectations and urgency which accompany the robotic technologies. By the 1970s to 1980s when the manufacturing began to change from Japan to USA, Japan had employed almost ten times more robots which was equal to the USA count; but there was almost no employment at all. Furthermore, use of robots, automation and information processing increases productivity which makes companies more competitive on an international level; this also increases the growth opportunities and more workers get employed. On the other hand, the firms that fail to increase productivity end up becoming less competitive, hence, some employs have to be retrenched to protect the firm.  

We Will Write A Custom Essay Sample On
ANY TOPIC SPECIFICALLY
FOR YOU

For Only $13.90/page


order now

Generally, it seems factual that some manufacturing firm floor employees and warehouse workers could face the risk of losing their jobs to robots. But at the same time, these jobs will replace some of the functions which have been taken by the robots. As a result, the workers will need to possess higher skills that can satisfy the needs of the customers so that they can keep their jobs.

Alternately, Caldwell argues that robots should not be blamed for the shift in the workplace because they have managed to form a more skilled work-force dynamic (Caldwell, 2013, 99). Unfortunately, this claim is not quantifiable because the Bureau of Labor Statistics revealed that the robotic industry was employing around one million employees in America to handle the material, the manufacturing as well as manage the plant. A study carried out by Cambridge Educational et al., showed that around three million jobs were formed all around the world due to the robotics (2009, 576). Additionally, they predict that around one million jobs can be created within the next five years.

It should be noted that the pace of the technological advancements depends relatively on the industry; the affected worker may be taken to new jobs. Technological innovations and its effect on a workforce have come to be the center of attention, particularly in the United States. These innovations may include the advanced systems of communication, industrial robots, manufacturing systems that are flexible, Computer Assisted Manufacturing (CAM) and Computer Assisted Design (CAD). Such modern technologies instill low-cost and powerful microelectronic devices which possess the potential to enhance productivity in the factory production and the office. Furthermore, they share a broad appeal while being installed globally. Various experts claim that technological change is moving at a faster pace and thousands of employees in offices and plants are affected as the laborsaving innovations become accepted on a broader spectrum. Also, it is assumed that the technological advancements will be advantageous for the society because these changes are revolutionary.                                   

The production period started evolving from the 1970s and its last stage of achievement is termed as Computer Integrated Manufacturing that has new techniques. The automation era involved machines that were numerically controlled and the employment of the industrial robots were seen. The most significant feature of the flexible systems of automation were first used in the United States of America in 1970; it was considered as the replacement of a human being’s mental force whose physical capability was previously replaced by the machines. The microelectronic technologies meant the mental labor was divided into smaller pieces through assigning repeated and routine works to the machines. Therefore, the unskilled labor was eventually replaced by the programmed automation technologies.

New technologies have generated enhanced forms that have various effects on the work skills and tasks. One effect is that the amounts of complicated tasks that include manual capabilities and skills have been diminished. Secondly, the new complicated tasks need mental problem-solving, an understanding of the interdependencies of the system and generated skills. Furthermore, the tacit skills linked with old technology are needed so that many tasks can be performed effectively. Also, the link between technology and the user can change fundamentally.

Evidently, the entire procedure of creating robots of various kinds shares a connection to the improvement of the machines utilizing artificial intelligence. On the other hand, these days machines have been programmed to do particular tasks effectively; therefore, an understanding of this fact could be applied in the early stages of each process of development which may offer a chance to build robots which are currently needed. The employees of the future, especially the ones within the manufacturing environments must learn that they need to include automation and robotics into their firms in the production processes. The optimization of the procedures will assist the manual workers as well as their companies when it comes to maintaining the development of the market. Such an understanding, as well as the demand for more powerful and capable automation systems as well as industrial robots, can assist to develop better solutions.

Many pieces of evidence have been given with regards to the main technological developments which have had more lasting effects, particularly on the society. One illustration is Spinning Mule; this as well as similar machines had the capability to produce high-quality fabrics at a faster rate and at a cheaper cost as compared to the spinning machines that were operated manually. This made the smaller business experience more difficulties when it came to selling their products. Afterwards, hunger and poverty triggered an uprising of weavers back in 1844. However, the assembly line introduction by Henry Ford presented a technology revolution but it had a surprising influence on the society even though the costs of production were lower. This gave them the chance to sell their cars at affordable prices. Currently, many more individuals can afford personal cars and at the same time, there was an increased demand which created millions of job opportunities. Examples like these reveal that the economic influences by technological advancements cannot be assumed in advance.

Technologies have an effect on both the economy and society which signifies revolution. The revolution can be found in the microelectronics area which is initially observed through the arising of machines that are numerically controlled, production systems that are flexible and industrial robots. Hence, the technological advancement enhances human capability through the use of technology; the information or computer revolution goes beyond labor’s mental capability. As a result, these extensions make technology the potent force of the economy.

Microelectronic technologies that use the microprocessors or computers in the components or circuits make great developments, particularly within the electronics, optics and mechanics sectors. In the 1980s, expansion of the microelectronic technologies gave firms significant opportunities with regards to production flexibility, management, and planning techniques as well as the product variety. In the process of production, automation technologies that trigger new productions like subcontracting firm relation led to a decrease in production scales and new labor organization.

Companies and organizations have realized that machine learning, artificial intelligence, and robotics have the ability to replace humans as well as improve accuracy, efficiency and productivity of operations. The Great Recession made most businesses to downsize the workforce due to budgetary reasons. Moreover, they had to figure out ways that could maintain their operations through a leaner workforce. Currently, some businesses have managed to make profits with a lean workforce because certain functions have been automated and robots have been utilized; advanced manufacturing procedures are also used to operate the business or company.