In This Issue
An all new way for clients to find you
Sandler Sales Training - nearly ready to go!
Business solutions, at your fingertips
CSIA Webinar Series
CSIA delivers membership value
Remote audits of branch offices now an option
Nominations now open
Insurance coverage upgraded
Quarterly ARC Automation Index
Three phrases that should raise red flags
ARC Industry Forum 2014
ISA Automation Week report
Mobility - it's more than just browsing around
Lead your team for a successful ERP implementation
Welcome new members

AEG Systems
SA de CV
Emiliano, MOR

Ocean Data Systems Ltd
Wayland, MA

Triad Systems Engineering, Inc
Sterling, VA

Tsi Power
Antigo, WI

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Congratulations to these CSIA Certified members


Newly Certified
E-Technologies Group

West Chester, Ohio

Gersa Monterrey SA de CV
Santa Catarina, NL

JMP Engineering, Inc
Burlington, Ontario


Newly Recertified
JMP Engineering Inc
London, Ontario


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April 23-26, 2014

Watch for registration to open later this month!

 The go-to resource for control system integration.  

December 2013  
Integrator Exchange
Coming in 2014:
An all new way for clients to find you


The compelling advantage of an association is that members can combine resources and efforts to accomplish that which, individually, would be impossible. Your collective support has helped CSIA raise awareness of control system integration as a profession, promote best practices for the industry, and grow into a recognized, credible source of information and connections. As our public website says, CSIA is "the go-to resource for control system integration."


The CSIA website consistently ranks high in search engine results. In addition to educating prospective clients and members, the website drives traffic to Find an Integrator, where prospective clients can search for the integrator with the right qualifications for their industrial automation project.


Find an Integrator, which is an enhanced membership directory that we have made public, has served us well. However, you told us you wanted more ways to channel visitors from the CSIA website to your firms. In response, the Board of Directors approved development of an all new platform to replace Find an Integrator. Diamax, a firm with extensive experience developing online buyers guides, will work with CSIA between now and April 2014 to create what we are calling "marketplace."  


All members - integrators and partners - will receive a free listing, plus the opportunity to upgrade their listing with many new features such as sales contacts, white papers, video, and links to suppliers or integrators they are affiliated with. Nonmembers' listings will show minimal information, with the opportunity to join CSIA and receive all the benefits of membership, including better visibility and placement in search results on the marketplace.


More information will be shared as development gets underway.


Members of the development task force include: Rich Brueggman, Data Science Automation; Roy Kok, Ocean Data Systems; Joe Martin, Martin Control Systems; Pat Miller, Engineered Energy Solutions; Mark Moriarty, Rockwell Automation; Derek Rector, Diamax; and CSIA staff.


Thank you to the task force that developed the criteria and selected Diamax as the supplier. Members included: Sam Hoff, Patti Engineering; Steve Goldberg, Matrix Technologies; Joe Martin, Martin Contol Systems; PC Romano, Avid Solutions; Mark Voigtmann, Faegre Baker Daniels LLP; and CSIA staff. 


Sandler Sales Training - we are nearly ready to go!
by Bob Lowe, CSIA Executive Director

You told us that selling is one of your biggest challenges, so CSIA responded with this program developed for CSIA by the global leader in sales training, Sandler Training. The respondents of the recent survey spoke loudly, telling us that you are ready to embrace this program to overcome the challenge of selling system integration services. From the survey:

  • 32 are interested in the Initial Training on the two days prior to our 2014 Executive Conference.
  • 21 are interested in the Initial Training that will take place soon after the conference.
  • 31 are interested in a one-year online Reinforcement Package with monthly sessions and other online privileges.
  • Six are interested in a one-year training program conducted weekly at their local Sandler Training Center.

Here's how the program works. Attend an initial training program either the two days before our annual conference or a two-day program soon after the conference (location to be determined) at a cost of about $2,000. The class is preceded by an individual assessment. After initial training, select either the local training at a Sandler Training Center or the online Reinforcement Package. The approximate cost for local training is $9,000, depending on the number registered. The approximate cost for the online Reinforcement Package is $2,500. A DISC or Devine Assessment cost is approximately $400.


Follow the link for a general description of the Sandler's Solution Program that delivers sales training to sales professionals and those who manage sales professionals. The program is tailored to the system integration industry, except for the local training where you will be with people from many industries.


Final details, pricing and registration will be available soon. Note that the maximum number of participants for the initial training is 50 so decide quickly when registration opens.


What is the ROI? Acquire one or more contracts worth a total of about $100,000 at a net profit of 10%, and your approximate $10,000 investment is paid back. All future net profits that would have otherwise been missed go straight to your bottom line. I think you'll agree that is good value.


Business solutions, at your fingertips

by Bob Lowe, CSIA Executive Director


Our monthly webinars conclude with an opportunity for attendees to provide suggestions for future webinars. We appreciate the feedback and do attempt to find presenters for popular topics. However, we now have a substantial library of webinar recordings, newsletters with educational articles, library documents, and conversations on Open Forum that may provide the insight you are seeking.


Some examples of requests from a recent webinar are:

  • Business system software options - View the November 2012 webinar by Don Roberts and also see the PTMA library on the Connected Community. For future reference, there will be a presentation at the 2014 conference on ERP for integrators.
  • Financial statements - View the October 2012 webinar by Craig Billings
  • Configuration management - See the Resources for Managing Your Business library entry by Jeff Miller called Configuration Management "How To" White Paper for Control Systems Integrators.
  • Project risk management - See the Resources for Managing Your Business library entry called Proposal Risk Assessment Template. It is a start. For future reference, there will be a presentation at the 2014 conference on project risk management.

So search around, you may be surprised what you find. Items from the past may not be perfect solutions but are a start. Keep the ideas coming. We do try to go with webinars that are somewhat specific to systems integration and avoid ones that would span many industries and are otherwise available in the marketplace. Also, I encourage you to ask your pressing business questions on the Open Forum.


webinar series

Tremendous response for webinar series!

We've been thrilled to see record attendance at just about every webinar in this series leading up to the 2014 Executive Conference.  

We're taking a break for December, but look forward to continuing the series on Jan. 29. Watch for registration information in early January. 



Jan. 29, 2014
People: hiring, leading, coaching and evaluating

Ken Edmundson


Feb. 26, 2014
Performance management program for technical professionals

Gina Coleal


March 26, 2014
J-curve management

Nick Setchell


All webinars will be at 11 a.m., Eastern Time US (New York), and are hosted on WebEx by Software Toolbox, a CSIA Partner member.



Nov. 20, 2013 
Developing a professional project management team for systems integration

Jeff Miller


Oct. 23, 2013

24-month rolling plan
Nick Setchell
Sept. 25, 2013 
Organizational culture: Methods for improving performance

Ken Edmundson


Aug. 28, 2013

Holistic overview of proactive management
Nick Setchell 



CSIA delivers membership value 
The plan for 2013 was to add 70 new members. As of Dec. 2, we added 86 new members (64 integrators and 22 partner automation vendors). Historically, the fourth quarter is a period of high growth so we'll likely have a banner year. The new members, located globally, learned about CSIA in various ways and concluded that CSIA holds value for them.

What are the top five benefits that deliver value? According to our survey results, they are:
1. Best practices and certification
2. Networking and building relationships globally
3. Education
4. Business statistics and benchmarking
5. Business insurance

We report this information not to elicit praise for CSIA leadership and staff, but rather as an example to integrators that are thinking of joining but are uncertain if CSIA is a good value. According to the data, we are. Join now and enjoy membership through 2014 for the cost of one year. That's VALUE!

As for current members, the question is: Are you taking advantage of your membership? If not, look closely at the benefits that CSIA offers. The value is there, you just have to engage.

Let's dispel two myths about CSIA membership:

1. CSIA Certification is required. Wrong! It's not. We simply encourage members to apply our business best practices. When comprehensively applied, certification becomes a natural outcome and you'll be a better company for it.

2. You must reveal your financials. Wrong! We just need to know approximate annual revenue so as to set your annual dues, which are scaled based on revenue.


Remote audits of branch offices now an option

by Bob Lowe, CSIA Executive Director


CSIA has developed a program that enables branch offices to be audited from a member's head office to avoid the cost of an auditor traveling to the branch office. End-user clients have told me that having only the head office CSIA Certified is not acceptable if their project will be served by the integrator's branch office. A Shell Oil engineer was the most recent person to voice that opinion.


I witnessed the first branch office remote audit in October at JMP Engineering's head office in London, Ontario. Conducted by Brian Mullen of Exotek, it was an effective audit. The Remote Audit Plan was developed by a task force of volunteers and we are grateful for their service. We are also grateful to Scott Shawyer, JMP Engineering President, for offering to use his company for the pilot program.


There were lessons learned at both my witness audit and the second one performed by Brian for another JMP Engineering branch, so improvements will be made to the plan and it will become available to CSIA members with head offices that are CSIA Certified in early 2014. Currently, the Remote Audit Plan is a separate document but will be integrated into the new Certification Management System that began in September 2013.


It is important to note that very good technical infrastructure at both the head office and branch office is necessary for a successful remote audit. If the technology for audio, video and collaboration does not function well and the auditor cannot effectively perform the audit, thereby requiring rescheduling, it stands to reason that there will be substantial cost to the member.


A message from the Past Chair


Dear Friends,


As an organization we have a lot of exciting projects that continue to keep the board and staff very busy. One area that takes some time to prepare for are the nominations, selection and award of the various accolades that make up part of our awards program at each conference. 


This is the first request for nominations for our three awards: Charlie Bergman "Remember Me," Rising Star, and Partner. The awards nomination form is available online.


We really want your input on this. The form is pretty self-explanatory, but if you have questions don't hesitate to ask. As always I am happy to help.


Best regards,


Steve Goldberg

CSIA Past Chair, Nominations Committee Chair


Insurance coverage upgraded
by Paul Barnard, CSIA Insurance Program Manager

First, we welcome two new members to our program:
  • BTB Solutions, Ridgefield, Wash.
  • Omnicon SA, Cali, Columbia
I am please to advise that our exclusive combined general and professional errors and omissions policy has been upgraded and now includes the following coverage:
  • Breach of contract
  • Fidelity of employees
  • Loss of documents
  • Payment of withheld fees
  • Cyber liability
  • Privacy liability
  • System damage
  • System business interruption
  • Pollution liability
  • Hired or leased vehicles automobiles
  • Global coverage
Specially crafted for control system integrators, I believe our members now have available to them the broadest coverage on the market.

For more information please contact me at or 001-610-507-6595.


Quarterly ARC Automation Index now available
In this issue: Adoption of Supply Chain Managment Solutions via the Cloud in Asia - Present Scenario and Future Outlook


ARC Advisory Group recently conducted an end user survey to identify the current status, trends, and adoption of supply chain management (SCM) solutions via cloud in Asia. The survey also focused on understanding the end use reasons for deploying or no deploying SCM solutions via cloud. The survey also captures the achievements of the SCM on cloud users and where they see the technology flourishing in a five-year timespan.


With the onset of the recent economic recession, companies started looking at utilizing technology to reduce costs and increase efficiency. This helped create interest in cloud computing (software, platform, and infrastructure offered via a service) with its promise of low upfront costs, since companies can deploy any part of the software, as a service, by paying in the "per use" model. Though there were some initial hesitations concerning security and scalability, suppliers have addressed these issues to a great extent by bringing in different cloud models (public, private, and hybrid).


Read the full report and see the ARC Index archives on the CSIA Connected Community.

Three phrases that should raise red flags
by Brian P. Clifford, CSIA attorney

I often see clients of my integrator clients propose "off-the-shelf" commercial sales agreements for use in complex integration projects. When reviewing these clients' attempts to fit the proverbial "square peg in the round hole," there are a few phrases that frequently jump off the page as problematic for integrators.

"Free from defects." All software has bugs. And hardware is never perfect. Many contracts that are not drafted with the unique issues of the integration industry in mind use terms such as "free from defects" in warranty provisions and in the descriptions of project deliverables. At the least, I try to revise this phrase to read "free from material defects." In other words, there may be bugs or hardware issues in my client's deliverables - but none that will have a significant adverse effect on the operation of the integrated system. If possible, I try to tailor the warranty for the specific project.

"Best efforts." I often see this term used to describe the level of service my client is required to provide, especially when there are no set deliverables for the project. The phrase is inherently ambiguous and is an invitation for a dispute when project difficulties are encountered. I generally recommend that this term be deleted. Instead, I try to talk in specifics regarding realistic expectations for the project, e.g., "for $X amount, we will perform Y hours of work in accordance with industry standards."

"Work-for-hire." This phrase makes reference to certain definitions in the U.S. Copyright Act and other international conventions on intellectual property rights. Basically it is used to transfer ownership of a work from the creator to the "hiring entity." Although portions of the project deliverables may be appropriate for this designation - such as custom applications - many other components of my client's work - such as background architecture, common code and generic toolkits - should not be traded away to the client for its exclusive use.
When reviewing "standard" terms and conditions from your clients, be on the look-out for these "red-flag" phrases. Negotiating them out of your contract will make your holidays much brighter!

Brian Clifford is a member of the automation practice at Faegre Baker Daniels LLP. He can be reached at +1.260.460.1687 or
ARC Industry Forum 2014: superb opportunity!

What a phenomenal opportunity for CSIA! An End-user Owner Operator Workshop will be hosted by CSIA following the ARC Industry Forum in Orlando on Thursday, Feb. 13. We are grateful to Andy Chatha, ARC Advisory Group president, for accepting our request to invite all end-users at the ARC Forum to remain through early afternoon for a workshop on their desires for delivery of automation by integrators and suppliers. This end-users-only forum will result in an ARC analyst-authored article for distribution to workshop attendees, CSIA members and ARC clients. The idea for this workshop came from the CSIA Partner Committee.

Managing project risk and increasing business value when automating manufacturing and process systems is critically important to end users. So in addition to the workshop at the forum, three CSIA members ---  Avid Solutions, Matrix Technologies and Stone Technologies ---  and their clients, including Nestle and Campbell's Soup, will present lessons they've learned regarding risk and business value. The discussion will include real-world applications and the value of CSIA certification. By attending the session, owner/operators will learn the value of working with a certified system integrator, key principles for project success and pitfalls to avoid. Learn more at ARC Industry Forum.

With CSIA being a trade association and an ARC client, CSIA members receive a 10% discount on registration for this unique forum in which integrators and suppliers can more fully appreciate the challenges of their clients, network with prospective clients and get a peek at the future of industrial automation. To register for the ARC Industry Forum 2014 in Orlando and receive the discount, contact Paula King at 781-471-1110 or There are no comparable events anywhere in North America. For our members outside of North America, ARC hosts these forums in several countries.


ISA Automation Week report

by Bob Lowe, CSIA Executive Director


ISA Automation Week 2013 featured a well-designed, six-track education program and excellent keynote presentations. My two presentations - CSIA Best Practices for Project Management and CSIA Best Practices for System Development Lifecycle - in the theater of the Networking Hub attracted good-sized audiences.


In addition to Automation Week I attended a semi-annual Automation Federation meeting which, amongst other things, solidified our contacts with some of the subject matter experts on cybersecurity. It led to the CSIA Cybersecurity Task Force having the opportunity to review and comment on the soon-to-be-released IEC62443-4-2 standard Security for industrial automation and control systems - Part 4-2: Technical Security Requirements for IACS Components. This international standard will impact the CSIA Best Practices Manual Revision 5 so it's great to participate in the comment phase of the standard's development.


We are grateful to ISA for the opportunity to participate in their ISA Automation Week 2013. Our relationship with ISA continues to grow. We are finding multiple ways for our associations to mutually benefit one another.


Mobility - it's more than just browsing around

GE The system integrator community has been deploying "mobile" solutions for their industrial clients for a number of years. These systems have been mostly built on thin client and browser technologies that essentially move the "control room" access to the device. Often, there is incremental work to build a separate and distinct set of screens that better fit the mobile device footprint. This is certainly a model of some utility but it falls considerably short of the "mobile revolution" that we all embrace in the consumer world.

Smartphone apps have redefined mobility for the consumer world. They were designed for a mobile platform. Apps are intuitive, easy to use, and updateable. Research has shown that smartphone users spend 80% of the time in apps while only 20% in browsers. Think about how you use your mobile device. You have online GPS to guide you and keep track of your steps. You have an app to keep you on schedule. You even have an app to tell you where the closest taco joint is. Your browser is great for deeper research into the unexpected questions. But 80% of the time you crave the utility of a focused app.

In the "app world," the user gets notifications, has the ability to interact with the content in an easy and intuitive way, can set up things quickly, and can interact with the data in a touch-friendly way. In general, "true mobile" is an overall user experience that hides the back-end complexity from the user and delivers information in context tailored to being instant and on the go. The industrial app user does not need to understand the hierarchy of screens of the full SCADA system. The industrial app user is presented seamlessly with the information on the equipment that is immediately in front of him.

The next generations of HMI/SCADA, PLCs, and MES are emerging around a "true mobile" solution. More and more, customers are expecting system integrators to deliver a mobile solution with industrial apps around system KPI performance, maintenance work orders, geocentric context, and more. True mobility is being defined by systems that deliver real-time operational intelligence (RtOI) with "true mobile" experiences.

Learn more and stop just browsing around.


Lead your team for a successful ERP implementation
co-authored by Six S Partners and Epicor Software Corporation

Companies justify moving to a standard enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution based on a number of compelling reasons. By supporting a single system rather than several smaller and disparate systems, businesses can enjoy economies of scale and a single application architecture with fewer user interfaces that creates lower integration costs. And through common tasks automation (as well as easier access to more information), best practice systems and procedures allow for efficiencies not available when using multiple systems.

While the case for standardizing on a single ERP system can be relatively straightforward to make, the costs and impacts are sometimes easy to overlook. There are a number of factors to help ensure a successful implementation. These include:

1. Build a cross-functional team
2. Set proper expectations to manage change
3. Create new business processes in sync with the new system
4. Implement in a phased approach
5. Make the necessary time and financial investment

However, implementing or updating a company's ERP solution typically means a change to the way its business operates. Those involved with this change need to collect a lot of information to clearly understand the impact of the new technology on current work functions. The same information companies collect to ensure a smooth technology introduction can also be used to support lean process improvement, achieve compliance certification, or just make it easier for staff to do a better job. Process mapping tools for ERP solutions helps companies visualize, define, improve, and implement its new or updated business processes.
Process mapping tools simplify the process of defining, documenting and visualizing business processes. XSOL InOrder™ is the mapping tool behind Epicor Best Practice Models.

What are the benefits?
* Develop a dynamic business environment that is flexible and agile
* Turn an ERP investment into ongoing business improvement
* Help cut the cost of compliance and lift operational effectiveness
* Help ensure an on-time on-budget ERP implementation
* Help drive a greater return on ERP investment

Supported by best practice models, powerful mapping tools help businesses ensure processes and competitive advantages are reflected in their ERP solution, increasing the success of their implementation or upgrade and improving their return on investment. The end result is a more productive and cost-efficient organization that can contribute to a company's bottom line.

Editor's note: Erik Johnson, VP Technical Strategy, Epicor Software Corp will be presenting on the value of ERP software at the 2014 CSIA Executive Conference. Come to the conference and get the full story. Registration opening soon.