Automation World, www.automationworld.com, Online Survey Results Cross Department Teams Lead Procure

Dec. 1, 2003
Cross-functional teams are taking responsibility for automation project planning, approval and implementation, a combination of asset management strategies are used in industry, and Microsoft operating platforms dominate manufacturing systems.

This summary of results from a recent survey on the Automation World Web site represents data from 393 respondents. The survey examined strategies for automation procurement and asset management and looked at the software tools used in manufacturing.

The way automation projects are planned, approved and implemented has changed significantly in the past several years. While 35 percent of the respondents say that the engineering department has total responsibility, 55 percent cite a team of manufacturing engineers, managers and information technology professionals as responsible for automation projects in their organizations. Twenty-one percent hire system integrators and consultants, while 17 percent purchase integration services from their automation suppliers.

When it comes to protecting plant assets, respondents are hedging bets by applying a variety of management strategies, including reactive, predictive and scheduled maintenance. Eleven percent of respondents rely solely on reactive maintenance, by repairing equipment only after it fails. Seven percent use predictive maintenance and 19 percent schedule downtime for maintenance. The majority, however, use a combination of two (30 percent) or three (30 percent) of the three asset management strategies.

The clear leader in the operating system world is the Microsoft Windows platform, used by 93 percent of respondents. Thirty-nine percent cited use of real-time operating systems, 21 percent apply Unix operating systems, and 8 percent have already deployed the Microsoft .Net platform for manufacturing.

For more information on any of these topics, visit the Automation World Web site at www.automationworld.com. Automation buying strategies are highlighted in the December issue; asset management strategies are the focus of the November issue; and software platforms, including Microsoft .Net are covered in our archived October issue.

If you’ve got an idea for a survey topic or have a comment about our Web site, please send Jane Gerold an email at [email protected].