Monday, February 27, 2006

Wal-Mart: Don't Ask Them About Robots

"Wal-Mart representative Christi Gallagher, the company's spokeswoman on supply chain and technology issues, took my call. She also happens to be the media point person on labor relations and employment litigation.

As soon as I mentioned robots, Gallagher seemed eager to end the call. "We are not looking into robots in any way, shape or form," she said abruptly. I tried probing for more, but she had nothing further to offer."

More here.

You can replace a lot of people with inventory taking robots. Robots don't need healthcare and we get even lower prices.

NOTE:In 2015, at about the same time that the airlines are laying off all of their pilots, Wal-Mart or Target or some other large retailer will be introducing a totally automated inventory management system. Every shelf will be fitted with RFID tags and bar codes, allowing a mobile pick-and-place robot to find the exact shelf location of every product in the store. Every individual product in the warehouse will also be fitted with an RFID tag and bar code, so the robot will be able to pick up and identify every product that it needs to shelve. A relatively simple computer vision system will allow the robot to stack items on the shelves. These inventory management robots will operate 24-hours-a-day shuttling merchandise from the back of the store onto the shelves as items are sold. The robots will also constantly straighten the shelves and re-shelve merchandise. All of the technology needed to do this is nearly in place today. Read more here.

1 comment:

Karina Jackson said...

I was pleasantly surprised when I looked at the job listings on the Adirondack Daily Enterprise website today: there are over 50 job openings now, during the slow season! Every time I check the listings there are many openings, the job market is pretty good, what's all the complaining about?

Perhaps what frustrates people is that most of the jobs available are low-wage manual labor positions. Wal-mart will be creating these SAME types of jobs, maybe worse. Who are the job-hunters in Saranac Lake, what jobs are they looking for? Let's find a company where residents can hold jobs that they enjoy, with decent salaries and benefits. Or let's support local businesses so that they can continue to hire more employees.