In the factory of the future, the employees’ only resemblance to the workers of today may be their work clothes. Although they will still work at assembly stations, they will not work in rigid shifts, be subject to inflexible production processes, or be restricted to a single workstation. Most monotonous and unilaterally strenuous activities will probably also be things of the past in 15 years, according to Johannes Labuttis, who studied mechanical engineering at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) and now works work at Siemens Corporate Development in Munich. As a Lead Consultant, he deals with issues such as the role of human beings in production processes.
“With the help of computers, employees will use their smartphones to organize their shifts themselves in the future,” he says. “In the process, they will even be able to take into account their personal chronobiological attributes — in other words, whether they’re day people or night people. This will enable them to flexibly adapt their work assignments to their personal needs and current situation.”