At the start of the pandemic, Walmart employed over 500 robots to keep up with demand. These machines, made by Bossa Nova Robotics, were brought in to scan shelves and create a working list of what was needed around each store, eliminating the need for human workers to check inventory themselves. Once a robot finished roaming and compiled a list, it would then inform a staff member and the employee would fill the shelves.
Though the idea of automatizing work may have seemed appealing at first, Walmart has now decided to cut ties with Bossa Nova, saying they have found a better way to keep up with inventory while utilizing actual workers. They also found that human employees completed tasks just as quickly as the robots, and have voiced concerns about consumers’ reactions to the robots.
While Walmart has decided to stick with human workers, other companies are still experimenting with robot technology. For example, tech company Telexistence has launched their flagship Model-T robot in a variety of stores in Japan. Their robots are controlled by VR technology and can stock shelves and communicate with customers.
Humans vs. Robots
As technology develops, companies are constantly faced with the decision of whether or not to incorporate new means of automation. This can sometimes involve replacing human workers. As companies grow and demand increases, they must consider all options to stay successful and profitable. Has your company had to make the difficult decision to employee robots over human workers? Has it worked out successfully? What are the pros and cons of taking such actions? We would love to hear your experience! Email us: firstname.lastname@example.org or give us a call: (303) 536-5505.