The Importance of the Production Value Chain Continues: Observations by Edward Garibian, president of eRPortal Software, Inc.

I recently attended Rockwell Automation’s Automation Fair held in Chicago. Attendees explored how The Connected Enterprise can help their organizations achieve faster time to market, optimize assets, lower total cost of ownership, and improve enterprise risk. Attendees told me that the industry forums, user group meetings, hands-on labs, technical sessions, and demonstrations helped expand their knowledge and use of the latest control, power, and information technologies.

However, it was the one-on-one meetings and conversations I had with attendees that provided the greatest insight into the evolving needs of leading organizations in the industrial automation space. There was an overwhelming interest in connecting enterprise systems, including business applications and financial systems, with industrial plant control and automation systems. Such integration is what I call the Production Value Chain and consider the Holy Grail of Industrial Automation.

The majority of attendees I spoke with shared candid insight into their operations and their charge to streamline efficiencies in operations, to provide more transparency and visibility to the Production Value Chain that includes machine maintenance and operation, and to connect vital information like production line down time with back-office enterprise systems. They explained that plant management is no longer relegated to something that happens behind closed doors in far-flung locations, but is the heart of the business around which savvy organizations understand the strategic value of connecting industrial automation operations with business operations procedures and processes – from finance to sales / marketing and customer service.

The core architecture used to create eRPortal software allows for easy interoperability with customers’ existing systems and applications. This architecture allows us to create tight relationships with industry leading software providers like Rockwell Automation. Specifically, we discussed the importance of better leveraging eRPortal’s Rockwell FactoryTalk family connectivity to enable condition-based work order and corrective action functionality. Attendee interest also included using eRPortal’s interoperability with FactoryTalk to trigger rules-based work orders within their existing computer maintenance management system (CMMS) / enterprise asset management (EAM) system. Now, local plant and industrial operations personnel can leverage eRPortal’s mobile and control system integrated functionality, while ensuring that master records within corporate financial or EAM systems are properly updated.

Such integration allows industrial plant personnel to optimize plant management (PM) schedules by adding machine usage level triggers in place of or in conjunction with traditional calendar-based schedules. The Condition-based correction action module also adds the ability to create an unlimited number of conditions, predictive maintenance triggers, or actions based on any combination of FactoryTalk tag values or levels. Action can include inspection orders, work orders, or parts demand notifications and workflows.

Intelligent business solutions integration with real-time machine and factory floor data provides a new level of insight and can dramatically improve customer service, reduce sales cycles, and enhance customer and brand loyalty. Just in time knowledge at the machine level is a vital element contributing to accurate production floor modeling and output visibility. Such insight helps plant managers develop maintenance plans and anticipate repairs. The production value chain is invaluable – it extends from materials (parts, purchasing, and materials) to functional operations and ultimately to sales.

Both comments and pings are currently closed.

Comments are closed.

Subscribe to RSS Feed