Robotization is set to transform every aspect of society. Lanny Cohen, Chief Technology Officer at Capgemini, reflects on this incredible revolution.
12 MILLION: ROBOTS IN SERVICE AROUND THE WORLD IN 2016
Age of the intelligent robot
“Robots, you ask? They’re here, and they’re getting better all the time!” Lanny Cohen, Chief Technology Officer at Capgemini, is excited that robots are becoming increasingly able to handle complex tasks. “They can do almost anything: manufacture products, collect and analyze complex data in real time, perform services for individuals… The advantage of robotization is that it dramatically boosts companies’ productivity and optimizes processing times. In high-tech industries such as the space industry, we found that robots made it possible to carry out more tests and manufacturing trials – and all at a 100% reliability rate. Human error is a thing of the past,” says Cohen.
"RATHER THAN ASKING WHAT TECHNOLOGY IS DOING TO US, WE SHOULD ASK WHAT IT CAN DO FOR US." - LANNY COHEN
Robotization is spreading to all sectors and departments, from manufacturing to commerce, healthcare, education and energy. “You wouldn’t believe how many projects, experiments and prototypes we develop each day with our clients,” continues Cohen. “Businesses are taking on a whole new mindset! Digitization is a game changer that forces us to rethink all our old systems and organizations. Robots are the direct result of this digital revolution.”
"ROBOTS DO NOT DESTROY JOBS. THEY TRANSFORM THEM." - LANNY COHEN
And Capgemini is playing its part, with plenty of assets to contribute. “The first is our balance between global vision, which helps us keep abreast of technological advances, and our local presence, which enables us to offer solutions tailored to our clients’ exact requirements. The second advantage is our innovation-related experience and our ability to make innovation work for our clients. Finally, the Group is adept at forming partnerships, particularly with its clients. This is essential since innovation is increasingly emerging as a result of discussion and reflection. Companies put their confidence in us and we work with them using a partnership approach,” he explains.
What role do people play? In a society of robots, what’s left for people to do? “It’s true that some jobs will change. However, robotization is more likely to replace activities within these jobs, leaving more time for value add tasks,” says Cohen. “But we can encourage a smooth transition by helping employees acquire new skills. In addition, new professions are on the horizon, such as robotic architects and engineers, testers, software designers, robotic operators, specialized consultants and cybersecurity personnel. A new framework is falling into place.”
1.3 MILLION: INDUSTRIAL ROBOTS SOLD WORLDWIDE IN 2016 ALONE
Creativity, emotional intelligence and cognitive flexibility will be the new skills needed. This encourages more of our human potential and allows robots to complete activities within our jobs that are predictable – working as a team essentially.
There are plenty of reasons to be optimistic. For one, robotics offers new possibilities beyond productivity such as enhancing equal opportunity. “Robots can be a tremendous tool for reducing inequalities by facilitating access to education. We are already working with various companies and institutions on developing robots that can learn and transmit knowledge. The opportunities in this field are endless,” concludes Cohen.
"AT CAPGEMINI, WE’RE NOT AFRAID OF TECHNOLOGY. IT’S PART OF OUR DNA AND OUR CULTURE." - LANNY COHEN