How can system integrators help with IIoT adoption?

Helping manufacturers put IIoT into practice.

By CFE Media December 31, 2016

System integrators provided advice on how to improve adoption of Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) technologies.

Q: How can system integrators help with Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) adoption?

Bill Pollock

President and CEO

Optimation Technology Inc.

Rush, N.Y.

#28 on the 2016 System Integrator Giants List

Systems integrators are the head, hands, and feet that are or will be trained, ready and capable of implementing IIoT when clients and products are both ready to be mated. Mark Hoffman President Automation & Control Concepts St. Louis, Mo. #44 on the 2016 System Integrator Giants List Propose small project pilots and do cost/profit sharing. Focus on areas like preventive/predictive maintenance, energy monitoring, remote supporting of critical equipment and sensors, OEE [overall equipment effectiveness], and compliance.

Mukund Muley

Managing Director

Cotmac Electronics Pvt Ltd

Pune, India

#12 on the 2016 System Integrators Giants List

System integrators have [the] best knowledge on the customers’ requirement since they had been the primary interface with them. They can also offer the solution at best price in [the] best possible time. They don’t have to offer only one particular brand for the complete range of products. Thus they can choose the best possible combination of products and technology and offer the optimized solution.

Michael Lindley

Vice President

Concept Systems Inc.

Albany, Ore.

#20 on the 2016 System Integrators Giants List

There are two things that integrators can do to assist clients: 1) Integrators can consult with companies to develop an automation roadmap; a shared and defined vision that defines where a specific company wants to be in 3 to 5 years to achieve forecasted growth objectives. An automation roadmap will help companies target and schedule older equipment for retrofit/replacement and evaluate and plan for incorporating robotics-both of which will feed data into an IIoT strategy. An automation roadmap is a valuable tool for planning and alignment. 2) Continue to educate companies with blog articles, case studies, videos of IIoT success stories, and lessons learned. The more information that can be shared amongst integrators and manufacturers, the more educated and prepared we will all be with IIoT and the changes it is sure to bring.

Zoran Šoškić

Engineering Manager


Beograd, Serbia

#43 on the 2016 System Integrator Giants List

IIoT will become a component of smart manufacturing in the years to come, if it is not already. System integrators can start by realizing that IIoT offers many benefits, such as shortening of the time needed for certain parts of our job to be done. System integrators can also take the initiative to propose their IIoT-enabled solutions to their clients. However, the first move is always on the client. We can’t deliver the solution that our clients don’t wish or don’t understand they need.

Todd Williams

Vice President


Walled Lake, Mich.

#2 on the 2016 System Integrators Giants List

The biggest thing that system integrators can do to support IIoT adoption is to educate end users that it is not much different from what we are already doing. The biggest advantage of adopting the IIoT philosophy is that you instantly future-proof your system into an agile, adaptive solution that can help support future endeavors. I like to think of an IIoT platform as a way to pick the best products and software modules and connect them together in a very seamless manner. Systems integrators can help clients create solutions that bridge IT [information technology] security requirements with the plant floor functionality.

Rafael Pezzella

IASTECH Automação de Sistemas Ltda

Sales Manager

Sao Paulo, Brazil

#65 on the 2016 System Integrator Giants List

We can provide systems, infrastructure, and new solutions.

Matthew Burton, PE

Corporate Director of Automation Technology

Hargrove Controls + Automation

Mobile, Ala.

#46 on the 2016 Systems Integrator Giants List

Systems integrators, by the nature of their business, are constantly implementing new technologies in a variety of applications. Because of their vast experience, SIs [system integrators] are prime resources for helping clients adopt IIoT products. Hargrove’s core value of continuously improving and adapting to new technologies allows us to team with our clients in a productive way thus improving value and efficiency to their operations. PC Romano President Avid Solutions East Windsor, N.J. #37 on the 2016 System Integrator Giants List System integrators need to be looking at their domain expertise and remove the fear and doubt of the unfamiliar that goes along with the IIoT. Now is the time to think about the "art of the possible."

David Ziskind

Automation and System Integration

The Dennis Group LLC

Duluth, Ga.

#62 on the 2016 System Integrator Giants List

System integrators must always start by assessing a client’s needs and concerns to ensure that the company’s goals are aligned with the solution being presented. Depending upon a client’s goals, this may or may not include IIoT. However, if IIoT is deemed an appropriate option, system integrators must be able to articulate the associated risks and benefits to a client and help demonstrate the value IIoT can provide.

Nigel James

Director of Business Development & Chief Strategic Officer

Burrow Global LLC

Houston, TX.

#14 on the 2016 System Integrator Giants List

Engage specific solutions and find some test cases to roll out, then document them with white papers. Success breeds success. There needs to be work on the security gap.

Brent McPhail


Brave Control Solutions

Windsor, Ontario

#71 on the 2016 System Integrator Giants List

Systems integrators can help with the adoption of the IIoT and smart manufacturing simply by continuing to embrace the vision and truth that technology is the only way forward.

As systems integrators, we tend to accept what was done in the past as the way things should be done now and in the future.

How are we still sticking with closed source, black box solutions when the high tech world of video games and software are going open source? How are we still living with hardware monopolies that dictate our engineering solutions, like OEM [original equipment manufacturers], HMI [human-machine interface] panels that sell for 10 times the cost of a tablet that can perform the same job better?

Systems integrators need to challenge these norms, and we need to continue to ask ourselves, "Are we doing this because we always have, or because it makes sense today and in the future?"

Author Bio: Since its founding in 2010, CFE Media and Technology has provided engineers in manufacturing, commercial and industrial buildings, and manufacturing control systems with the knowledge they need to improve their operational efficiency. CFE delivers the right information at the right time around the world through a variety of platforms.