Choosing a robot integrator is like choosing a spouse. You need to proceed with caution and patience, with a view toward the future. Many integrators have a great appearance, but are not equipped to follow through on the promises they make. Below are some questions to ask that can help you choose the right “mate”:
- Have you done this before?
- Plasma welding is far different from heavy multi-pass welding or aluminum welding. Your particular application might have unique challenges that the integrator has never faced before.
- The same goes for material handling. Anybody can throw down a conveyor. Can they handle 64 unique SKU’s on 8 different lines?
- What robots do you work with?Not all robots are built the same. Some brands are better at particular tasks than others. We work across several robot platforms, which allows us to be “robot neutral”. ISI works with the customer to make the best fit for their particular application and environment.
- What is your specialty?
- If an integrator says, “Yeah we can do that too,” you might want to choose another partner. Nobody is great at everything. Perhaps a Porsche can get through that mud bog, but do you really want to try it out on your dime?
- At ISI we focus on two main areas: welding and material handling. We have a depth and breadth of knowledge in these two segments that gives us a great deal of confidence to do just about anything. We don’t know much about paint, however, so we don’t do it.
- What is your timeframe?
- It is a happy dilemma to be busy. Any integrator worth its salt should have a plate full of work, but they should also be able to give you a reasonable date to complete your project. It is better to under-promise and over-deliver.