Automation in the Semiconductor Industry: Decode its State in 2022 and Beyond
With the world becoming digitally enabled every day, semiconductors have become quite an indispensable tool for modern’s world. We need them for cell phones, cars, washing machines, and all the electronics that play an important part in making human life comfortable.
Although you will find a few manufacturing giants, the demand is increasing a lot more than what anyone anticipated prior to the pandemic. Besides that the production of chips is pretty complex and the process alone takes several weeks. This is also contributing to a tense market environment.
With the sales of semiconductors touching around 41.8 billion with a projected rise in the number by 8% by the end of 2022, it is important that the industry figures out how to seamlessly be a part of Industry 4.0. With around 75 billion IoT devices by 2025, the semiconductor industry can’t miss out on the cashing opportunity because of the manufacturing challenges.
Hence, automation and data sharing is an important aspect to drive production efficiencies. But the logical reason here is the most logical reason why this industry must adopt 4.0. Let’s find out!
Semiconductor industry and Industry 4.0
You have an idea about the trends of the semiconductor industry. The industry is not at all dominated by the sales of PCs or smartphones anymore. You will find hundreds of products getting launched in the marketplace. This is why the need for innovation is increasing. This is why Industry 4.0 is looking like the most organic step.
Furthermore, globally manufacturing is moving towards smart factory systems and processes. Clearly, the need and demand for power savings and intelligent products is increasing. In addition to that, the need to integrate autonomous systems into the current operations is increasing as well.
Once you include automation, here’s what you will see: sensors gather data in real-time, transform it into the digital realm, which results in quicker responses and accelerated efficiency. Hiring a large number of workers or clinging towards manual labor won’t help you accomplish tasks anyway now. This is why the need for automation is becoming the need of the hour to increase efficiency in:
- Material handling
The idea is to reduce human interference and automate the control systems so that it improves quality and flexibility of the manufacturing processes. As per a study, manufacturing is the single most differentiator in the semiconductor industry’s cost driver. And global leaders believe that with the world at the cusp of innovation, there is a need to evolve in terms of automation. To understand how, let’s look at some use cases below.
Use cases of technology in semiconductor manufacturing
- Product development: Did you know that the processing time used to develop chips results in yield losses? This is why manufacturers need to optimize operational processes to facilitate new products with assured quality, consistency, and reliability. Automation can help working with expensive and fragile semiconductors without losing the production efficiency.
- Manufacturing operations: To stay competitive and efficient, digitization is the necessity. It will encompass vertical and horizontal processes and will help reduce cycle times, increase productivity without increasing footprint. It will increase automation while reducing operational costs.
- Supply chain: Everyone knows that there was a hindrance in the supply chain when the pandemic literally disrupted everything. But even after all that, there was an increase in revenue and it touched around $476 billion. This is why sensors and digital disruption is the future to overcome the issues of supply and demand. Automation will assist the industry to decide before any other disruption happens in future.
- Field servicing: With the increasing popularity of the IoT and AI in the semiconductor industry, it's time to respond to the evolution and be a part of the world of tomorrow. Automation will help to make field servicing aspects quite effective. It helps improve CX and increases revenue by creating new markets.
All in all, automation through technology will increase the chances to avoid the usual challenges faced by the semiconductor industry, which is production, quality, efficiency, and customer experience.
Here’s what a semiconductor industry can benefit from using automation in their everyday operations.
Benefits of automation in semiconductor industry
- Labor shortage is an increasing issue with the semiconductor industry. It is hard to find good employees that can increase productivity. You can replace that with automation, which can become an effective solution to this growing problem.
- Machines are like the workhorse of every small and medium sized business. There is no denying that certain components can be risky. Automating such tasks can make it easier for organizations to stay in compliance with the government regulations. You can easily ensure that your workers feel safe and risk-free.
- There are limitations to human abilities and who can forget the famous quote “to err is human.” But if you want to continue tasks with utmost efficiency and quality 24/7, you need to replace certain positions with automation. This will enhance the quality and capacity of the production processes. After all, automated systems can keep up with the rigorous nature of the production and limit human interventions.
- You can reduce the huge expenses in terms of employees. Yes, it will cost you money to buy machines, technology, and other stuff but once you deploy them, your work will be streamlined. It will be any day less than the ongoing payments to the employees. You can replace the menial and repetitive tasks by automation and use your workforce for more strategic decision making processes.
- Automation will improve the overall work environment and will improve the quality of the end products. And will help your employees focus on critical matters that will impact the bottom line.
Final Thoughts: A dynamic wave of automation will improve the functioning of semiconductor industry
The benefits of automation are more than just improving the quality of services. It will improve productivity, sales, efficiency, work, and streamline the entire structure. Many predict that automation will evolve at the rate of 9.2% between 2021-2028 and it will reach around 355 billion in 2028.
It’s time that industries don’t miss out on such opportunities if you wish to accelerate the digital transformation and gain enhanced customer experiences and revenue.