Think about the manufacturing facility you go to work in every day. Do you notice it’s becoming more technologically advanced? Manufacturers across the industry are embracing the new digital age, making processes more automated and efficient. With this, you may have heard the widely held view that goes something like: Move over, humans. Robots will take it from here.

The anxiety about automation is understandable in light of the mind-blowing progress that tech companies have made lately in robotics and artificial intelligence. People have feared new technologies for centuries. Yet for just as long, machines have changed work; they have not replaced it. As you find yourself in the 4th industrial revolution – with its digital, automated assembly lines – know that it is no exception to this trend. Over the long run, automation transforms rather than eliminates human jobs.

As a modern-day manufacturing employee, you may have already witnessed more and more routine, repetitive assembly tasks being taken over by machines. But as certain jobs disappear, new ones open up. The 4th industrial revolution has never presented manufacturers with an either-or-choice – robots or humans. It has always been about combining the talents of both.

Machines have the ability to assemble things faster than any human ever could, but humans possess the analytics, domain expertise and valuable knowledge required to solve problems and optimize factory production.

How to Position yourself as a valuable employee:

  • Seek out training
    • Consider taking a class or workshop so you can easily adapt to the changes coming to the industry
    • Focus on courses that will advance your knowledge of automation and machines in manufacturing
  • Look for a mentor in your industry who possess the knowledge and skills you would like to enhance
  • Keep your digital skills up to date
  • Refine your soft skills

With a focus on upskilling and eagerness to learn, you’ll be on the fast track to an exciting career with pathways to grow.

The central phenomenon of modern, advanced manufacturing is not job loss, but the shift in the kinds of jobs that will be available. Ultimately, it is the convergence of artificial and human intelligence that will enable manufacturers to achieve a new era of speed, flexibility, efficiency and connectivity in the 21st century.

ETS partners with advanced manufacturers every day to build their world-class teams. If you’re interested in growing your career, connect with one of our expert industrial recruiters now.