Robot body revamps to cut costs and win members

The British Automation and Robotics Association (Bara) is to be reorganised to provide more practical benefits to members, attract more people to join and reduce its dependence on the biennial NEC Automation show. `The main reason is to enhance the capability of the association to provide services for members and to educate UK industry as […]

The British Automation and Robotics Association (Bara) is to be reorganised to provide more practical benefits to members, attract more people to join and reduce its dependence on the biennial NEC Automation show.

`The main reason is to enhance the capability of the association to provide services for members and to educate UK industry as a whole,’ said Bara president Mike Wilson.

He said the reorganisation was not primarily about cost cutting. However, it is understood that Bara was dependent financially on the Automation show, and a decline in exhibitor numbers this year had forced a rethink.

`The needs of industry change,’ Wilson said. `Ten years ago the prime movers were the automotive industry. Now they know what they need to know. We asked ourselves what was the best way of spreading the message to industries which are starting to look at robotics but don’t know how to go about it, such as the food sector. We hadn’t attracted them in significant numbers.’

Ken Young, Bara’s manager designate added: `Members often felt they weren’t getting sufficient benefits. I want to put together an organisation in which everyone wants to be a member because there are great benefits.’

As part of this process the organisation is to move from Aston Science Park to Warwick International Manufacturing Centre. `At Warwick we will have access to demonstration areas and to the university’s research and development facilities,’ said Wilson. This will allow activities such as seminars to be more practical.

Details are expected to be announced later this month.

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