Industrial Automation is a step beyond mechanisation the use of machines, control systems and information technologies to optimise productivity in the production of goods and delivery of services. The key aim is to increase productivity, and/or quality beyond human levels so as to realise economies of scale, and/or realise predictable quality levels. Automation plays an increasingly important role in the world economy and in daily experience.
Automation has had a notable impact in a wide range of industries beyond manufacturing including automated telephone switchboards, medical processes and automated teller machines. Automation has been responsible for the shift in the world economy from industrial jobs to service jobs in the 20th and 21st centuries.