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Robots to replace thousands of jobs at Raymond
Lipi Agrawal | HRKatha | New Delhi | Thursday, 22 September 2016

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About 10 per cent of the staff at each of the factories will lose their jobs to automation.

Automation is rapidly making in-roads across sectors, and manufacturing is one of the first to be hit. Having said that, the Indian textile major and branded fabric and fashion retailer, Raymond, is preparing to replace about 10,000 jobs at its various plants by deploying robots in the coming two to three years.

Although the plan is yet in its initial stages, the company has begun evaluating technologies for mechanising most of its plants. Geethaa Ghaneckar, CHRO- Raymond, shared, “There will be some replacements over the next few years, but mostly new hiring will not take place as we look to mechanise our plants. Also, wherever we are adding new capacity or a manufacturing plant, we will look at a mechanised approach instead of hiring more manpower.”

Geethaa Ghaneckar

The company currently has around 30,000 employees working in the 16 manufacturing units across the country. As part of the technical intervention, the company will reportedly scale down the number of employees to 20,000 by adopting the latest technology and strategy. It is being speculated that each one of the newly developing robots that may be deployed at the manufacturing units is capable of replacing 100 employees.

Having identified the right technology to digitise its manufacturing units, some jobs at Raymond are certainly going to get outdated. Ghaneckar shared that, as a result of the automation, the job cuts will be about 10 percent of the staff at each of the factories. The company will, however, decide on ways for smooth transition of those affected, through VRS and such schemes.

There have been various reports in the recent past suggesting that automation will reduce employment opportunities in the software sector. However, this update from Raymond confirms that the manufacturing sector is going to witness a bulk of transformation through technological advancements and automation. This, in turn, strengthens the fear of losing employment opportunities to automation across other industries as well, in the near future.

© 2016 HR Katha
Last modified on Thursday, 22 September 2016

3 comments

  • Comment Link Rohit Friday, 23 September 2016 posted by Rohit

    Well as every news has it, this news has its dark side too. With forecasts predicting that India becoming the most populous country by 2022 with the average age of an Indian to be 29 years, the news brings the darker side of automation. US and Europe are great examples of automation but simultaneously need to look at population.
    If a country has a decreasing population rate, automation can complement but it becomes a sad story if we do not see complementary effects

  • Comment Link MCS Bhakuni Friday, 23 September 2016 posted by MCS Bhakuni

    This should be viewed not as a technological advancement but a regressive act vis- a- vis the human beings. Most conservatively speaking each employee would have about 4 persons depending on him or her (at an average). so with every laid off employee 5 people would loose food on the table.. And this one employee may not have an alternate available. It is the corporate social responsibility to ensure that at least the people connected with them directly are not abandoned in such a manner.

  • Comment Link Ami Vider Thursday, 22 September 2016 posted by Ami Vider

    Good to see how India is moving forward in modernizing. The US and Europe are great examples. With robotics taking strong position in manufacturing, from automobiles to textiles, economies and especially individual manufacturers have to get automation into their plants. Simply put, today's manufacturing is not made up of a rows and rows of workers Henry Ford made so famous more than a century ago. The transition was hard to some, but worth the effort. Good piece, good writing!

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