How to Wire Your Factory to Code Without Going Broke


Wiring a factory to utilize advanced manufacturing techniques like robotics and automation can seem daunting, especially for small businesses with limited budgets. However, with careful planning and phased implementation, going broke doesn't have to be the end result. In this article, I'll walk through step-by-step how a factory manager can thoughtfully wire their facility for innovation without breaking the bank.

Assess CurrentProcesses and Infrastructure

Before making any changes, take stock of current factory processes, equipment, layout, and infrastructure. Map out all existing:

This assessment will identify top priorities for upgrades and optimization.

Create a Phased Plan

With priorities identified, create a phased implementation plan to spread costs over time. Some ideas:

The key is to stagger big changes instead of overhauling everything at once. Begin with affordable fixes like 5S lean manufacturing to improve workflow.

Evaluate In-House vs Outsourced Options

Carefully weigh make vs buy choices for new technology:

A blended approach is often best. For example, use an external company for initial setup and training, but handle ongoing small improvements in-house. Consider outsourcing only a subsection of a production line to start.

Take Advantage of Incentives

Research government and utility incentives to offset costs:

Your local Small Business Development Center can inform you about programs specific to your industry and region.

Start with a Pilot

Before rolling out any major changes:

Gradual launch reduces disruptions to existing production and cashflow.

Monitor Progress and Metrics

Once implemented, closely monitor key metrics to verify improvements:

Continuous monitoring ensures changes are delivering the desired ROI as expected. Tweak as needed.


Bringing coding and automation into a factory takes careful planning, not just throwing money at the latest tech. By starting slowly, leveraging outside resources, and tracking progress, factory managers can wire their operations for innovation without breaking the bank. A phased, disciplined approach is the key to managing costs while positioning for future growth.