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The Automation Team

We win when we pull together

Building an automation team and getting team members pulling in the same direction is fundamental to creating a successful manufacturing enterprise.

This month, Automation World focuses on issues relating to building and managing an automation team.

Editor Gary Mintchell looks at challenges faced by managers trying to staff today’s team. New technology and ways of doing business can change the definition of a perfect team member. Read how in the article beginning on page 28.

Once a team is built, it must have the means to function as a unit. Rob Spiegel, in an article beginning on page 32, explores how manufacturers are using collaboration tools to improve design, operations and supply chain functions and bring together internal teams, as well as outside suppliers, customers and third-party vendors.

Relations between process controls and information technology groups have long been strained. A reorganization at ChevronTexaco brings the two groups together into one functional unit. Global Refining Chief Information Officer, Sam Parino, discusses with Editorial Director, Jane Gerold, how the company benefits, in an interview that begins on page 38.

When a manufacturer teams with an automation supplier, it can lead to a new product that not only meets the manufacturer’s needs, but also one that the supplier can take to the rest of the market as well. That’s what happened when General Mills set out to find a better high-end cartoning machine for its U.S. plants. Managing Editor Wes Iversen takes a closer look at the process in the story beginning on page 42.

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