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August 4, 2017

The Incremental Approach to Operational Excellence Part 2

Omer Qadri
Omer Qadri

Omer has 15+ years experience evangelizing the power of software in Industrial Automation, Enterprise software and SaaS applications.

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System Platform 2017 offers a phased approach in achieving excellence maturity, as lessons learned can be incorporated in the future stages and hence reduce the risk of failure. System Platform 2017’s approach enables organizations to succeed in one plant/area and then apply lessons learned as means of continuous process improvement to other plants/areas.

In my last post, we talked about  Level 1 – Reactive. Basic survival: paper focused/homegrown, its challenges, offering capabilies, and key benefits. In this post, we will continue with Level 2 and 3.

 System Platform 2017’s approach enables organizations to succeed in one plant/area and then apply lessons learnt as means of continuous process improvement to other plants/areas.

Level 2 - Prepared. Improved efficiency: focused data systems


Level 2 maturity represents a strategic decision to move away from survival mode to data-driven plant information systems. Data collection is automated, paper processes are retired, and manual operations are reduced. However, due to procure of various systems over time, information silos have developed. Disparate systems at the enterprise and shop floor, leading to data redundancy, with the same shop floor data being entered into various systems in order to keep them up-to- date with the manufacturing cycle. Moreover, these information silos lead to localized decision making, which negatively impacts the overall operations.

The inefficiencies at level 2 become apparent when corporations attempt to combine information from these desperate systems to make business decisions. Typically, each system stores its information differently. And the manual costs involved in analyzing seemingly unrelated data do not justify the obtained results. 

Offering Capabilities: 

System Platform 2017 offers a ‘single version of the truth’. HMI, SCADA, MES and IIoT applications can all reside in the same database, which also enables integration & interoperability between various legacy point solutions/systems.

Data can be exchanged within these systems to ensure thorough process integration. System Platform 2017 in essence unifies all essential plant information systems/data into a single robust information model. The data collected from multiple systems can assist in providing real-time decision support to various roles within the organization.

A superior approach to presenting information means less time to orient to the problem; focus on awareness and information; advanced alarm aggregation and alarm shelving to focus on the real problem; proper use of color to enhance operator performance and not distract or cause fatigue.

Key Benefits: 

  • Real-time Visibility & Reporting into Operations
  • Actionable data for the right person at the right time (Improved Situational Awareness)
  • Fast access to relevant data from multiple sources

 System Platform 2017 offers a phased approach in achieving excellence maturity, as lessons learned can be incorporated in the future stages and hence reduces the risk of failures.

Level 3 - Consistent. Competitive advantage: centralized data repository


Companies in this stage embrace the need to leverage centralized historical database however are challenged increase their decision-making capability by making deep insights; correlations and root cause analysis across the enterprise.

The organization shifts its focus from operating within independent silos to transparent, open data sharing and analysis across departments/organizations. However, sharing of operational data to mobile/remote or corporate business looking to make strategic business decisions is a challenge.

Offering Capabilities: 

Rapid application development leveraging out-of-box leveraging automation framework, more than just ‘symbol library’; Seamlessly enforce standards across any PLC, PAC, and DCS. Superior change management propagation based on mouse click; Object-oriented engineering approach enables repeatability and re-usability; allows enterprises to plug in new services or upgrade existing services in a granular fashion to address the new business requirements, thereby safeguarding existing IT infrastructure investments.

Cloud-based Historian and Engineering Development Environments provide immediate actionable information on any device, from any location to empower your mobile workforce and corporate users outside of control network.

Key Benefits:

  • Integrated, Standardized Operations
  • Operational agility to changing business needs
  • Remote Visibility
  • Complete transparency across the value chain
  • Accelerated decision-making with complete visibility into operations performance

More information

In my next blog posts, I will explain level 4 and 5.


Keywords: HMI/SCADA, IIM, MES/MOM, Situational Awareness

For additional reading: The business value of good user experience in HMI SCADA using Wonderware System Platform 2017