IMTS 2018 Recap

A couple of weeks ago, the Direct Recruiters Automation, Robotics and Controls team attended IMTS 2018 at McCormick Place in Chicago. Josh Olgin, Director of Robotics and Nick Saddleton, Automation, Robotics and Controls Executive Recruiter were two attendees out of the 129,415 registrations and 2,563 exhibiting companies. They, along with other attendees were provided access to networking opportunities, informative sessions, and impressive new technologies in the world of Manufacturing. Josh and Nick shared their three takeaways from the show:

There is an appetite for hiring in the industry.

With the overwhelming turn out and mass amount of people, manufacturing companies and professionals are looking for top-talent to join them. The DRI team was able to meet up with several professionals to discuss the industry and talent needs they have. With the need being so high, DRI has the ability to narrow down the focus of what the company is looking for to specifics and find right person. Sales, applications, robot programmers, robot engineers, mechanical design engineers, concepting, project management, and field service were just some of the talent categories discussed while we were there.

Robotics is a huge driver in industry trends.

The DRI team was so impressed with the robots, new technology and new applications they saw at the show. The exhibitors represented the ongoing growth in technology in the industry. Josh and Nick saw technologies such as sensor controls, machine tools, robots working hand in hand with CNC machinery, mobile robots, and even a bartending robot!

Cobots and Mobile Robots working together with humans

A noticeable trend in the industry and displayed at IMTS has been humans working together with different types of robots. Mobile robots small enough for warehouses or hospitals for example can come and go with no supervision, being programmed at the beginning of the day (by a human) and it does its job. Humans are able to manage how these robots work, resulting in an increase in productivity. Not only can cobots contribute to efficiency and growth, but also safety. They are able to work in harsh surroundings, so a human doesn’t get hurt. We are seeing more and more of this collaboration between humans and robots – something we expect to continue in driving growth in the industry.

As executive search specialists in the Automation, Robotics and Controls space, DRI enjoyed IMTS, the great new technologies, interesting companies, and the people they met there. If you happened to attend IMTS and did not get a chance to meet with Josh or Nick – let us know what you thought! Additionally, Josh will be attending Pack Expo on October 15th and 16th - Please reach out to him to set up a meeting if you’re attending as well.

Josh Olgin
Director of Robotics
440-996-0585
jolgin@directrecruiters.com

Nick Saddleton
Executive Recruiter
440-971-1193
nsaddleton@directrecruiters.com

Robots Take Jobs But Also Create Them

May 23, 2017

By Barb Miller, Marketing Manager

A recent report produced by Pricewaterhouse Coopers states that 38 percent of U.S. jobs (nearly 4 in 10) will be replaced by robots and artificial intelligence (AI) by the early 2030s. With so many jobs disappearing, many futurists and economists are considering the possibility of a jobless future.

We’re more optimistic and don’t believe it’s all doom and gloom. While it’s true that some people will see their jobs become obsolete, there will be opportunities for workers to acquire new skills in order to obtain other well-paying jobs. Robots in the workforce will not merely take jobs away, but also create them.

Just ask Amazon. Robots are helping to create 100,000 new jobs over the next 18 months! Thanks in part to more robots in its fulfillment centers, Amazon has been able to drive down shipping costs and pass those savings on to customers. Cheaper shipping made more people use Amazon, and the company hired more workers to meet this increased demand.

At IBM, the arrival of “Watson,” a broad collection of online tools that use artificial intelligence to help diagnose disease, among other things, is considered a job transformation and not job replacement.  Watson is not stealing jobs. It operates alongside humans, not in lieu of them.

Yes, the robotics revolution is here. There’s no way to avoid it. We advise that you take advantage of this new era and consider robotics as a career path. There’s a high demand for robotics talent in all the major industries including agriculture, health & medical, retail & hospitality, consumer goods, infrastructure, security, energy & mining, manufacturing, and supply chain.

What are the hottest jobs in robotics right now?

Robotics Engineer: A robotics engineer has the responsibility for developing the robot on paper. It takes research and high technicality. Also, as a robot is being built, an engineer will oversee practically every aspect of the development of the robot.

Software Developer: Each robot has a computerized internal system that is written and coded by a software developer. Obviously, the software developer must be highly skilled and proficient in computing coding and software design.

Technician: Robotics technicians build, maintain, test and repair robots. They may also work on robotics-related automation production systems. Therefore, they must have a strong background in hardware, electronics, and circuitry.

Sales Engineer: This professional will prospect, qualify, quote and close business opportunities. They must also be able to consult with the buyer and make any changes in the design to satisfy their needs.

Operator: Robotics operators are needed to ensure basic and safe robotic operations and adjustments as required.  They often read blueprints and ensure correct machine settings.

What traits are essential for those entering the robotics field? According to ROBOTIQ.com , here are a few crucial ones:

Systems Thinking: The understanding of a robotics system by examining the linkages and interactions between the components that comprise the entirety of that defined system.

Problem Solving: The ability to foresee problems before they even arise and troubleshooting if they do arise.

Programming Mindset: Very essential skill for robotics. Robotic programmers will interact with hardware and electronics plus must be comfortable learning any new language.

Mathematically Inclined: To succeed in robotics, you will need a good grasp of at least algebra, calculus and geometry. This is because robotics relies on being able to understand and manipulate abstract concepts, often representing those concepts as functions or equations.

Good Communication Skills:  Roboticists are a channel of communication between the different disciplines. Therefore, communication skills are vital. Being able to use your speaking and writing skills effectively is important. Also, very helpful is having good instructing skills.

Technology Design: Being able to design things that work is a must. It also means being able to figure out why something isn’t working properly and come up with possible solutions and having skills in repairing.

There’s no doubt, robots and AI will change the landscape of the job market and a new generation of jobs will emerge. The robotic revolution will come with a new wave of hiring.

Has your job been affected by Robotics and AI? If so, how? Please comment in the box below.

Internet of Things (IoT) & The Talent Rush

April 15, 2016

Internet of Things (IOT) is emerging as the next technology mega-trend across the entire business spectrum. The IoT is the network of physical objects or “things” embedded with electronics, software, sensors and network connectivity, which enables these objects to collect and exchange data. While IoT has been in the industry for several years, we will witness more things being connected to the Internet every day. According to Gartner, the IoT installed base will grow to 26 billion units by 2020.

The wide range of IoT uses will be sold into various markets such as medical device, factory automation sensors, industrial robotics, sensor motes for increased agricultural yield, automotive sensors, and infrastructure integrity monitoring systems for diverse areas, such as road and railway transportation, water distribution and electrical transmission.

With the IoT revolution, the demand for new positions and skills required to build the IoT is skyrocketing. The rush for talent includes a high demand for software developers, software engineers, hardware engineers, solutions architects, cloud architects, integration architects, information security analysts, computer systems engineers, cloud and product engineers, and commercial and industrial designers.

In addition, exactly what skills are needed? Hiring managers for IoT positions are looking for excellent communication skills, creativity, big data knowledge, security knowledge, artificial intelligence knowledge, and the ability to collaborate with people in different industries.

With the increasing Internet of Things technologies and jobs, there are also new ways for students or professionals to gain the skillsets needed for IoT industries.  Select universities such as the Global University of Engineering, Santa Clara, California has bachelor’s degree programs in IoT and UC Berkeley and Carnegie Mellon University have introduced Master’s programs related to data science.  Additionally, MIT offers an online IoT course and University of Wisconsin-Madison has an Internet of Things Lab dedicated to students in order to learn, research, and experiment with IoT technologies.

Not only are there opportunities for students to become IoT proficient, but companies are also finding ways to keep employees trained and up to speed with the Internet of Things.  General Electric, for example, opened a software center in 2011 to train data specialist to consult on company Internet project and Cisco is revising its IT and OT training in light of IoT.

The Internet of Things has been called the next Industrial Revolution. Businesses will be the top adopter of IoT solutions with 95% of CEO’s saying that their organizations will be involved in IoT someway over the next 3 years.  Such rapid adoption and growth requires the right talent with the right skill sets. Therefore, the talent rush is on.