What Does The Precision Machining Shop Of The Future Look Like?

August 14, 2013

What will our shops look like in 2020?

2020 is only 7 years away.

I think that it is going to be a lot different than just the “More Automation” trend we’ve been seeing for the last few years.

Over the last eight years, our shops have been adding automation to better compete against low labor cost manufacturing abroad and to improve shop capability.

I know, because at the end of 2003, we took a mission to China to see how we could better compete with the emerging dragon that was Chinese manufacturing.

What do the next 8 years hold in store for us? What will be the forces at work to reshape our shop as we know it?

Have a look at these two graphs from BLS:

This tells me something important-almost three quarters of all employees will be over 55!

…and this is how we get there…

Not looking so good for adding younger talent according to these charts.

The projected labor force growth over the next 10 years will be affected by the aging of the baby-boom generation; as a result, the labor force is projected to grow at a slower rate than in the last several decades

Here’s my  (tongue in cheek) artist’s conception of the shop of the future.

Two old supermachinists wired in to operate 18 machines via remote CNC

I hope you have a better vision than mine!

BLS Graphs

What is your vision for the shop of the future? 25 words or less please for Round 1. Thoughtful, shocking, and compelling visions will be considered for  an expanded treatment in a future post. Post your comment below.

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