Robot Operations - so what?!

February 18, 2020

Advances in robotic engineering are now seeing more machines do the work of humans in a variety of environments. From airports, to hospitals, to manufacturing plants, robots are operating across a range of roles, working autonomously to clean, deliver, dispense, monitor, and more.

The trouble is, these robots are only as effective as an organization’s ability to manage them. Just like their human counterparts, coordinating their role in relation to others is where their value really lies.

Robotics engineers can do incredible things to create highly sophisticated technology. But what’s holding organizations back from truly taking advantage of a robot’s autonomous skills is their ability to connect, monitor, and control a fleet of robots on a single ‘robot manufacturer agnostic’ platform.

For optimal operational efficiency and to scale the use of robotics across a business, organizations need a one-to-many system that centralizes and integrates their fleet with their existing technology stack and business systems.

A robot operations platform acts as a coordination system, linking machines to business operations. Take for example, a fleet of robots used for cleaning, or for moving sterilized equipment to align with surgical schedules around a hospital. As factors change, the ability to adapt by quickly updating routes, optimizing schedules and deploying more assistance as needed is what will make the robots most effective in their role of supporting operations. To do this, Rocos installs a light-weight service on the robot, which  allows for relevant data to be sent from the robot to the cloud, and likewise for the robot to receive messages from the Rocos platform hosted in the cloud or on-premise.

From this centralized platform, organizations have the ability to manage many robots as a collective, rather than in isolation. They can visualize them on a map, send commands and teleoperate a robot remotely if necessary. As their fleet scales or business processes evolve, robots are simply added to the operations platform. If robots need replacing or upgrading with newer models, it’s only the robot, rather than the domain-specific integration and coordination software, that must be updated, therefore minimizing cost and disruption to business operations.

For robotics companies, leveraging an operational platform allows them to commercialize products faster, and at scale, without the need to build custom solutions that rely on expensive in-house resource. It also avoids them having to build a bunch of stuff that’s really not core to their unique IP.

For enterprise organizations, this fills the missing link in robot applications, allowing them to more easily orchestrate robotics as part of an end-to-end business process. Robot manufacturers are rightly focused on building smart robots, but successful integration into the enterprise requires a different set of skills - which are often expensive to bring into a mechatronics team.

Leveraging a platform like Rocos gives you the opportunity to more rapidly implement technology in your operation in a way that complements existing business processes and systems, and adapt with agility as your business scales.

Find out more about what’s possible for your business – get in touch to request a demo, or try the platform for free.

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