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RIA National Robotics Week Webinars Now Available from Robotics Online

POSTED 05/24/2010

ANN ARBOR, Michigan USA – Videos of RIA’s Market Trends Webinar Series from National Robotics Week are now available free upon demand from Robotics Online. In these webcasts, RIA brings together industry insiders to examine developments and opportunities for robots in traditional and non-traditional applications.

How Robots Help American Companies Compete in a Global Economy
In this Market Trends Webinar, considerations for business strategy are covered in an examination of automation opportunities that can allow American companies to be more competitive in the global marketplace. Perspective comes from executives at real-world user and supplier companies who understand the challenges faced by small and medium businesses.

“If you think robots and automation take jobs away, you haven’t met Drew Greenblatt, President of Marlin Steel Wire (Baltimore, MD), where jobs were saved, head count increased and profits soared after installing robots and automation to compete against cheap labor in China and elsewhere,” said Brian Huse, Director, Marketing & PR, Robotic Industries Association.

Huse went on to relate that a group from NIST gathered in a conference room to attend the “Compete” webinar and afterward contacted Mr. Greenblatt through RIA. “NIST has nearly one billion dollars in annual funding and they are eager to find and help companies that use technology that saves jobs,” said Huse. “These webinars can be terrific networking engines. In fact, after the webinar, Mike Kunkle from Harley Davidson (who was on the panel of speakers) paid a visit to Marlin for a first-hand look at what they’ve accomplished.”

Career Opportunities in Robotics
In this webinar, RIA members address career possibilities from university and research work to cutting edge applications in traditional industries and beyond. Engineers, faculty and others interested in engineering career development can use this free, on-demand webinar to learn about exciting robotic opportunities in education, research and industry.

“RIA is raising its profile in the academic sector with webinars,” said Huse. “This webinar shows how careers in robotics are financially and personally rewarding.”

Speaking of rewards, one of the speakers, Jeanne Dietsch of MobileRobots, impressed a COO at a Maryland hospital so much they made connections after the webinar. “If these webinars help business it can mean more jobs in the long run,” said Huse. “If you have an idea for a webinar we would love to hear from you.”

RIA also has a program that allows corporate members to sponsor membership for educational institutions for only $350 per institute per year. Educator members (and their sponsors) can post unlimited content on Robotics Online, and networking allows them to form relationships that are mutually beneficial.

Food Robotics
The food and beverage industry is one of the fastest growing areas in robot automation according to RIA statistics. In this webinar, industry and regulatory issues are examined where robotics are used or can be used in food applications. RIA members and a guest from the USDA look at guidelines for sanitary design and implementation of robotics in various phases of food processing.

“Inquiries about robots for the food and beverage industry are quite common at RIA,” said Huse. “Just recently, a magazine from India asked the Association for input on why, especially in this economy, food and beverage companies should consider robots. The short answer is that robots are more affordable and more flexible than hard automation, and they improve a company’s competitiveness so it can protect and expand its workforce.”

Another reason to consider robots is for sanitary and safety reasons. Gains in productivity, hygiene, food safety and worker safety make robots feasible even in cheap labor markets, according to Huse.

Webinars from RIA can be tailored to specific needs and used to launch new products and truly educate users. RIA webinars allow time to provide details about technology and reinforce the expertise of member companies. From attracting and registering the right audience to production and archiving, RIA handles all the logistics and guides speakers through the entire webinar process.

Founded in 1974, RIA represents leading robot manufacturers, component suppliers, system integrators, end users, research groups, and consulting firms. The association sponsors the biennial Automate Show (formerly the International Robots, Vision & Motion Control Show) plus many regional events, and is secretariat of the ANSI/RIA R15.06-1999 Robot Safety Standard. RIA also serves as North America’s representative to the International Federation of Robotics and is the only source of North American robot sales statistics. It publishes the world’s most comprehensive robotics website, Robotics Online (www.robotics.org).


Brian Huse