The benefits of industrial automation services are well-known and understood. Automation can vastly reduce overhead, improve quality control (QC), and streamline processes. That is, if you find the right industrial automation services provider to handle the upgrade, installation, and integration into your existing processes and workflows.
This can be a difficult task, since automation still needs meticulous design and implementation, and most solutions have to be custom-built for the client. Here are a few questions to ask potential providers to help narrow down your choices.
Five Questions to Ask All Potential Industrial Automation Services Providers
Does the provider have relevant experience?
Every automation and integration project is different, but it will help if your automation provider has experience in your industry, or experience working with companies similar to yours in some significant way. Ask plenty of questions about their history.
How do they plan on testing their solution?
Obviously, you do not want new machines and computers installed without testing. What sort of protocols does the automation provider follow to test their systems? They should have simulations in place or similar ways of gathering performance data prior to implementation.
Can they integrate with your existing solutions?
If you have already automated parts of your business, this is absolutely critical. Your new systems must be able to integrate with your existing upgrades. If they balk or try to push you into upgrading entirely to their own systems, it is not a good sign.
How do they select vendors?
Automation solutions are sourced from many different hardware and software manufacturers. How are they selected and vetted? Get plenty of details about their selection process and criteria, to ensure the hardware and software from their vendors match your own requirements and needs.
What training and support services do they offer?
Unfortunately, many industrial automation services providers will try to bail after installing the hardware and software, demanding a premium for technical support or training. However, the truly reliable providers will include support and training as part of their services, or at least charge minimal prices.
ENGlobal Brings You into Industry 4.0
Since 1985, ENGlobal has been a widely trusted specialist systems engineering firm, with an emphasis on automation services and alternative energy solutions. ENGlobal will work with you to understand your needs, and to create an automation solution that fully achieves your goals. Contact ENGlobal today for a full consultation on your options.