ARC 2011: Invensys Announces ArchestrA Workflow

Invensys Operations Management presented next at the ARC Forum press conference announcing embedded ArchestrA Workflow software, a component of the company's open InFusionT Enterprise Control System (ECS).

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According to its release, it further extends the integrated application capabilities of the ArchestrA System Platform software and fueled by the company's latest SkeltaT BPM 2011 technology, ArchestrA Workflow software captures and enforces operational processes across business and production systems to automate the response to process exceptions. The software synchronizes human and system activity by enforcing standard operating procedures, as well as standard responses to abnormal events, such as downtime, quality breaches or yield decreases.

"Workflow automation for manufacturing and industrial applications has been growing in importance for plant operators and engineers, primarily due to their increased responsibility for compliance, quality and tracking, as well as knowledge capture," said Bob Mick, ARC Advisory Group. "Invensys Operations Management's unique approach of embedding workflow software within its ArchestrA technology enables customers to implement standard operating procedures and corrective actions, basically structuring repeatable, managed responses to process exceptions across the enterprise. This can be especially effective for processes and workflows that cross organizational boundaries such as operations, maintenance, laboratories and other business domains. For most customers, a single workflow application should help reduce delays in responding to abnormal events, thereby significantly increasing productivity."

The company recently signed a contract to deliver its ArchestrA Workflow software to one of the world's leading biotechnology companies. Under the terms of the agreement, Invensys Operations Management will provide its new software to help this multinational industry leader track issues and requests throughout its global operating facilities. Invensys Operations Management will also supply training and consulting services. The contract highlights the growing importance process manufacturers are placing on the link between people and processes as they seek operational excellence.

"Driving collaboration across people, processes and systems by streamlining workflow is the new frontier for achieving operational excellence in industrial automation," said Steve Garbrecht, vice president, products, solutions and services marketing, Invensys Operations Management. "Virtually all of the first-generation products that were intended to address this objective reside as standalone applications, outside the core software of automation and manufacturing systems. This approach limits the potential applicability across a customer's entire operation. ArchestrA Workflow software, on the other hand, readily equips users to configure the operational workflow activities of people, systems and equipment as an integral part of the automation system configuration. In addition, ArchestrA Workflow software can extend other manufacturing and business applications with new collaboration capabilities, making our InFusion Enterprise Control System an even more comprehensive offering for real-time business and operations control. This embedded approach enables new collaboration, standardization and cross-enterprise visibility for processes that have typically been isolated or addressed on an ad-hoc basis."

Typical applications for ArchestrA Workflow software according to the company include materials quarantine; escalation of incoming materials inspection to respond to quality or performance issues; and corrective action/preventative action (CAPA) enforcement, unscheduled downtime/maintenance responses or other unscheduled/unplanned activities that take place within a manufacturing enterprise.

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