August 25 visit to the North American headquarters of Omron in Hoffman Estates, IL. Left to right: Atef Massoud, Jose Rivera (CSIA), Mike Chen, Steve Rastberger, Joe Martin (Martin CSI), Jim Sellitto (Martin CSI) and Michael Burtner.

Message from CEO
Busy month of August highlighted by site visits
I wrote last month's message during my flight to Mexico City. Our Latin American Director, Marcela Vallejo, organized an intense week. We met with seven Partners and a slightly larger number of local System Integrators. 

Carlos Sandoval, General Manager of Gersa, a CSIA certified Mexican member,
meeting with Jose Rivera in Mexico City in July 2015.
Member Survey
Results to drive strategic planning and Executive Conference programming
In the August Newsletter I wrote a short article highlighting a few items that I felt were key take-aways from the 2015 survey. Since then I had the opportunity to further analyze the survey data. You may recall that we had several open-ended questions.

The Exchange
NEW! Limited number of high-visibility placements available

Introducing featured high-visibility placements on the Exchange
I am very pleased to report that the CSIA Industrial Automation Exchange has made its mark. The Exchange has gained the attention of end-user clients, supplier giants, and industry media - not to mention, Google search results. CSIA's end-user marketing strategy is cutting through the competitive online landscape and it's working!

Do you ever Google your name to reveal how the rest of the world sees you? Now, do the same thing for your Exchange profile. Plug your company name into the Exchange search bar and open the resulting profile page. How does it look? Are all the fields complete? Are there still default images where your company images should be? Are all your staff featured with photos and contact information? Be sure you're making the most of your profile and that it reflects well on your company.

Get more Exchange tips and best practice ideas at

Our newest Exchange subscribers. Join them!
Connected Community
Explore Certification tools
Is CSIA Certification on your to-do list this year? To get started, find the CSIA Certification manual and several materials for preparing for your audit in the Best Practices and Certification library of the Connected Community. Then reach out to CSIA staff who can formally guide you through the process.

Growing Your Business Marketing Toolbox
Check out CSIA's Growing Your Business Marketing Toolbox in the Connected Community for all kinds of resources to support your company's success.

These are just a few of the valuable tools available to CSIA members within the libraries of the Connected Community. Explore!

Committee takes into account vital perspectives of Partner members
The Partner Committee tackles issues where Partners play a key role. One example is planning for the Expo at the Executive Conference. At the August committee conference call, CSIA staff members Lynda Patterson, president, and Brittany Olson, event manager, shared options being considered for the Expo at the 2016 Executive Conference in Puerto Rico.
Revised Best Practices and Benchmark Manual to roll out at
2016 Executive Conference
The BP&B manual can be considered one of the Top 10 benefits of being a member of CSIA. I don't want to be too controversial, but I think it is only preceded by access and collaboration with the top integrators around the world.

Please plan to join us!
Mergers and Acquisitions, Part 2
For system integrators: Building, preparing and realizing value
There can be numerous reasons why the owner of a system integration firm may want to sell some or all of the company. Those reasons could include, but are not limited to, retirement, poor health or a capital need to help further grow the company. Regardless of the reasons why, there are immediate steps an integrator owner is recommended to take in the six to twelve month lead-up to a sale process.
Multiple cooks and the need for bright lines
Here is a legal lesson for a rainy day: Responsibility for the defective design of a control system is mostly about drawing lines. Whoever draws the brightest lines wins. What do I mean? It's because the design of a system solution, by necessity, often involves multiple "cooks." It involves the end-user, of course, as well as its constituent stakeholders and an intervening contractor or two. In fact, it can involve multiple disciplines.
An actual bricklayer's accident report
In my contributions to this newsletter, I have generally commented upon all aspects of our program in a serious, or as I like to think, studious manner. This month I thought I would be lighter hearted. In the sense that all valid claims are caused by an accident, I thought that I would share with you the true story below. The next time you're having a bad day, just think -- you're lucky you're not this guy!

Best practices in remote employee communications 
Thursday, September 24 - 11 a.m. EDT
Jeff Miller, Interstates Control Systems, Inc.

Bottom-Line Automation (Part 2 of 2): 
Making the financial case for investments in automation
Wednesday, October 21 - 11 a.m. EDT
Dr. Peter Martin, Schneider Electric Company 

Simplifying the Design of Robotic Systems
Thursday, Sept. 24 - 12 p.m. EDT

Consolidating Industrial Subsystems to Reduce Cost and Complexity
Sept. 22 - 12 p.m. EDT
National Instruments

The Path to Industry 4.0, IoT, and Smart Manufacturing
Sept. 29 - 12 p.m. EDT
Click for Lists:
Coming to a location near you
OPC Foundation Seminar Tour 2015
The OPC Foundation Seminar is on tour. The theme, "Interoperability for the Internet of Things and Industrie 4.0 - From Sensor to Cloud," will take the seminar through the USA and Canada, including a stop in Chicago where CSIA will be represented by CEO Jose Rivera. We invite you to check it out and register.