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Essay on the Automation of Machines

Essay Contents:

  1. Essay on the Meaning of Automation
  2. Essay on the Impact of Automation on Employment
  3. Essay on the Government Policy on Automation
  4. Essay on the Advantages of Automation
  5. Essay on the Disadvantages of Automation

Essay # 1. Meaning of Automation:

By the term ‘Automation’ we mean the process in which machines are used to operate other machines, not only to stop and to start them but also to adjust operations in process in order to avoid deviations from standard work specifications. Automation may be described as an advanced technology characterised by specific devices of communication and control in self-regulation without human intervention.


The Committee on Automation (1972) defined the term ‘automation’ to represent technical advances involving the use of automatic machinery, incorporating automatic transfer system or integrating automatic control or feedback and the use of computers. This definition is quite comprehensive.

Automation means the mechanisation of processes of production and thereby elimination of manual labour. Automation replaces work-farce by machines which begin with the work of handling and processing of materials at one end to get finished products at the other. This is a labour-saving device and is advocated in places where faster production or speedier performance of a job is necessary.

Automation may be in respect of factory equipment or it may be for office administration like computerisation of all sorts of accounting and other office jobs. Under automation, the control function is also performed by the machines.

There has been a lot of controversy over the implementation of automation. Workers oppose it saying that since it is one of the devices by which manual labour is dispensed with, it leads to unemployment.


This is of course true in the short period, but in the long-run this is not really true. Although the manpower requirements in direct production are reduced in industries introducing automation, more skilled indirect labour force will be required to operate the machines and provide for the maintenance of machines. Production increases with automation leading to increased requirements of skilled labour.

Hence, automation does not necessarily lead to unemployment. In developed countries having ‘full employment’, automation is essential, otherwise the available resources will not be fully utilised and standard of living will not be improved further. Automation also affects the price level. Through automation, the production increases.

With more production, the overhead expenses go down leading to reduction in cost per unit. Consequently the prices go down. Prices also go down because of greater supply of goods. Because of competition also the prices go down. On the other hand, the sellers can make more profits by selling more quantities at lower prices.

Thus, automation helps both the consumers and the producers by keeping down the price level.

Essay # 2. Impact of Automation on Employment:


There is generally resistance by the workers to any scheme of automation. The workers are afraid that the introduction of automation will create unemployment.

The committee on automation found that there was no direct retrenchment of labour due to introduction of computers. There was reduction in the number of jobs in the initial stages, but surplus employees could be adjusted for filling vacancies resulting from the deaths, retirements and resignation of the retained staff.

The immediate Affect of automation is the reduction in the demand for operative and clerical employees. At the same time, higher number of managers are needed to run the automatic plants.

Automation also creates employment firstly by creating the need for technicians required to design, repair and maintain the new machines and secondly, introduction of new trades demanding highly skilled and well-trained personnel.


Automation has also an important impact on the stage of economic development of the country. But the introduction of automation is not easy because it involves the investment of a sufficient amount of capital and spending of working capital for the maintenance of equipment.

Hence automation should be introduced only when it is really necessary. Electronic data processing equipment or computers should not be installed just to look modern.

Before the decision is taken to implement automation in plants, its impact on the profitability of the firm, employment of the existing work-force and contribution to the social well-being must be kept in view. The resistance on the part of the workers should also be given adequate attention.

The management must ensure and convince the workers that the surplus workers will not be retrenched, but will be suitably employed. The production capacity may be increased to give employment to all existing workers.

Essay # 3. Government Policy on Automation:


The Government follows a caution approach in regard to automation.

It encourages the use of automatic machines and computers in industry to achieve the following advantages:

1. To increase productivity.

2. To provide better products and services to the public.


3. To substitute imports of consumer durables and capital goods.

4. To promote export of quality products.

5. To increase the standard of living of the public.

6. To be self-sufficient in defence requirements.


7. To compete with other countries in research and development activities.

8. To increase employment opportunities.

The Government is encouraging use of computers in banks, LIC, public sector undertakings and government departments for better information management, customer service and productivity.

Essay # 4. Advantages of Automation:

1. It increases the productive capacity of the nation.

2. It improves the standard of living of the people by providing them goods of higher quality at cheaper rates.

3. The employees have to work less and their working conditions are improved. They get higher job satisfaction because repetitive and monotonous operations are performed by the machines.


4. It improves the quality of decision-making in business.

5. Employees work in safe and comfortable environment as automation eliminates heavy physical labour.

Essay # 5. Disadvantages of Automation:

1. It results in technological unemployment.

2. It requires huge investment. Small units can’t afford it.

3. Automated plant can’t be introduced in industries where changes are rapid because of changes in tastes of customers.

4. Since various operations are interdependent, failure in one part of the automatic plant shut down the entire plant.