Automation and new machine have increased efficiency, made work easier and enhanced better quality, media reported according to a survey.
Among the surveyed workers, 73% workers said they want a new machine, as opposed to only 27% workers who do not want/need a new machine.
South Asian Network on Economic Modeling (SANEM), in collaboration with USA-based nonprofit organization, Microfinance Opportunities (MFO), is conducting a research project on the quality of life of garment workers in Bangladesh.
Around 1,300 selected garment workers are surveyed every week since April 2020 under the project “Garment Worker Diaries”.
These workers are employed in factories spread across the five main industrial areas of Bangladesh (Chittagong, Dhaka City, Gazipur, Narayanganj, and Savar).
The June 2022 survey is a continuation of the investigation on workers’ experience with automation.
In the survey in June 2022, 85%, workers reported that their work quota increased when they last got a new machine.
However, of those that reported an increase in their workload, 71% said their salary did not change.
The reason behind salary staying at the same level despite increased productivity might be that the new machines made the work easier which was also confirmed by the workers.
About two-thirds (66%) said it took less time to meet their quota; 29% said it took about the same time, and 5% said it either took more time or they were not able to meet their new quota with the new machine.
The workers also mentioned that the new machines made it easier for them to do their work (35% of workers), helped them produce better quality pieces (18% of workers), and gave them an opportunity to learn and gain new experience (8% of workers).
Their answers suggest that, in many cases, the new machines helped workers meet their quota more quickly.
Previously, it was found that a small share of workers had experienced some type of automation of their work, and mostly this was simply an improvement in the existing technology they were using rather than a radical re-engineering of their work.