Process Summit Review: Rockwell Automation and The Connected Enterprise

Our manufacturer partners joined us at our recent Process Summit to share their expertise. In our last blog, we highlighted Burkert’s take on the latest standard in Industry 4.0 and how it may apply to your workplace.  Today’s blog features a high-level overview of Rockwell Automation’s presentation on modernizing your workplace with The Connected Enterprise, or smart manufacturing, converging the plant-level and enterprise networks.

Companies around the world are utilizing enterprise operational intelligence solutions from the industrial IoT to help workers at any level of your organization better track production performance. These smart devices can provide the actionable data to help you reduce operating costs and improve your results in areas like asset utilization, production efficiency, workforce performance and energy usage.

By 2022, millennials will outnumber any other generation in the workplace.  Modernizing your process not only reduces costs and helps you to remain competitive, it also is essential considering the generational switch within our workforce. Millennials are much more technologically intuitive, which enables them to efficiently adapt to these advancements, but also can frustrate them when work environments are living in the past. They see the value in having the information they need to do their jobs on one screen, in an integrated and cohesive display.

The Connected Enterprise improves efficiencies for your workers today and allows you to be proactive for the upcoming generations, who will be your predominant workforce of tomorrow – in this case, just a couple of years away!

Connected Enterprise

How Does The Connected Enterprise Apply to Your Process Application?

The Connected Enterprise is the end-to-end solution that includes hardware, network and software architecture solutions to allow control, data gathering and analysis of your processes. Our partners at Rockwell Automation are among the industry leaders on this important topic in manufacturing today. But they don’t just talk about it, they have implemented it across their own plants to experience its benefits first-hand.

In the past, it was extremely difficult to compare best practices within a plant, or between plants, as there were multiple sources of information, all of which measured different processes and data. Incomparable data meant that their facilities, and the company as a whole, couldn’t make confident, informed decisions.

Rockwell Automation implemented digital technologies to modernize this process, and now has clear visibility of each plant’s operation, allowing them to consolidate analytics and make informed decisions using real-time data. As a result, Rockwell Automation reduced lead times by 50% and decreased the number of parts that needed to be replaced by 50%.

The Connected Enterprise offers five major vectors of value:

  • Work Order Control: provides sequence control and the ability to control order status
  • Operator Control: comes with operator certification
  • Process Control: provides process and performance data, and insightful operations
  • Data & System Integration: allows automated data collection
  • Data Analytics: provides software to analyze and act on your production data

The Connected Enterprise provides a backbone for all supply chain subsystems. The value has farther reaching effects than that though, and results in increased productivity, efficiency, reduced downtime, improved quality, and broad visibility.

No single system runs plants, instead this integrated system relies on strong IT, OT and operations collaboration. The Connected Enterprise is an ongoing journey which must be tied into business strategy to support ongoing decisions and management.

If you’d like to learn more about how The Connected Enterprise can benefit your operations, or any of the other topics covered in our Process Summit, contact us or your French Gerleman Account Manager.

Process Solutions Process Summit