Mergers forcing more system integration, CSIA study finds
With consolidation on the rise, ability to put systems together a key expectation for end users.
More clients served by industrial automation are integrating automation equipment from several different vendors. This follows a third straight year of increased activity in mergers and acquisitions in North America. Members of the Control System Integrators Association (CSIA) specialize in combining processes to ensure that those systems function properly.
“Our CSIA members are increasingly providing solutions to clients involved in mergers and acquisitions,” said Bob Lowe, executive director of the Control System Integrators Association (CSIA). “It’s the technology—what we call business intelligence—that our members help plan and implement for their clients so they can enjoy greater understanding and peace of mind.”
A 2012 survey conducted by Deloitte LLP and its subsidiaries shows close to half of the business executives queried expect an upsurge in mergers and acquisitions. Higher growth is forecast in manufacturing where 62% of business leaders believe the number of M&A transactions will climb through 2014. Increased opportunities in emerging markets are credited for advancing this trend.
Lowe added that during mergers and acquisitions, automation initiatives result in system consolidations, waste reduction and improved yields. In addition, companies are increasingly realizing the value of control system integration because they want to manage the risk associated with multiple automation systems.
“Directors of quality, plant superintendents and many others are discovering that automation upgrades provided by CSIA are necessary to compete,” said Lowe. “Integrated automation systems make them more accountable to their customers and can help drive cost out of their product.”
Control system integrators provide best practice solutions through general management, quality assurance management, system development lifecycle, and service and support. To learn more about CSIA, visit www.controlsys.org.
Annual Salary Survey
After almost a decade of uncertainty, the confidence of plant floor managers is soaring. Even with a number of challenges and while implementing new technologies, there is a renewed sense of optimism among plant managers about their business and their future.
The respondents to the 2014 Plant Engineering Salary Survey come from throughout the U.S. and serve a variety of industries, but they are uniform in their optimism about manufacturing. This year’s survey found 79% consider manufacturing a secure career. That’s up from 75% in 2013 and significantly higher than the 63% figure when Plant Engineering first started asking that question a decade ago.