Managing the Project Scope: The Steps that you Should Take.

Managing the Project Scope: The Steps that you Should Take.

Managing the project scope on automation projects require the proper management of all the relevant aspects. This is the only way through which is client will be able to get the result in the expected prices. Moreover, the integrator will be able to complete a project within the specified resources for the expected results. There is a famous saying that the best contracts are made between those two parties that do not trust each other. The reason is, when people have a relationship with each other, they tend to create a contract with vague terms and conditions as the trust each other. However, there is a need to specify each point for expected results. Almost all projects are evaluated on three major points that include the following:

  • Cost: The project should be completed within the specified cost
  • Schedule: The project should be finished within defined limits.
  • Capabilities: The project should deliver the promised results.

Certain steps should be followed to create a successful project:

Step 1: Define a scope:

The first and the most important step is determining the scope of a project. If it is a complex one, defining scope will become more crucial. In this way, the team will be able to work efficiently even in the state of confusions. As the goals will be defined, it will be easier to focus on the ways of achieving them. An effective scope should cover the following points:

  • The goals and objectives of the project.
  • The ways that will be used for achievement.
  • The expected completion time.
  • The expectations from the integrator.

Step 2: Automation vision creation:

The next step is to create an automation vision of a project. This vision will clearly explain the future of a plan let’s say, maybe in the next ten years. This is an excellent way to provide a focus and a goal to a project. Moreover, the vision can focus on a whole project or a single plant as well. It will also be helpful in determining the issues and problems of the near future.

Step 3: Proper collaboration:

When it comes to automation projects, it is essential that an integrator should work with the client as a team. Everyone on the team must know about the ways things work. The integrator must avoid using ways that are not familiar with the other team members. For the success of a project, it is essential that people know how to work with the new equipment.

In the case of any problems within the project, it is the duty of both parties to work efficiently with each other for the solution. Moreover, both parties should work to keep those problems from rising. The best project can only result in a bond of trust between the integrator and client.

 

DynaGrace Enterprises attends Control System Integrators Association (CSIA) Executive Conference

DynaGrace Enterprises attends Control System Integrators Association (CSIA) Executive Conference

Control System Integrators Association (CSIA) Executive Conference

Linda Rawson, President, and CEO of DynaGrace Enterprises – an 8(a), WOSB, Information Technology and System Integration Company, attended the Control System Integrators Association (CSIA) Conference.  CSIA’s Annual Executive Conference is an annual conference where over 500 hundred members and industry partners gather to network, hear outstanding speakers, share best practices, and learn about new products and services.

CSIA - Control System Integrators Association

CSIA – Control System Integrators Association

2017 is the first year that DynaGrace Enterprises has attended the prestigious annual conference which changes locations every year.  The location of this year’s conference was the Fort Lauderdale Marriott Harbor Beach Resort and Spa located in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.  DynaGrace Enterprises’s President and CEO, Linda Rawson completed the two-day Best Practices Training and then attended the three-day conference as part of her commitment to strengthening DynaGrace Enterprise’s operations and growth opportunity.

Control system integrators design, build and implement efficient manufacturing, process, and industrial systems for manufacturing, process, and other industrial facilities to automate tasks and increase efficiency.  The Control System Integrators Association (CSIA), founded in 1994, is a not-for-profit, global trade association.  The mission of CSIA, according to the website, controlsys.org, is: “The mission of the Control System Integrators Association is to advance the industry of control system integration.”   By following sound business practices identified by CSIA, members improve their business processes and profit while enjoying an opportunity to share industry expertise and lessons learned with their peers.  CSIA has over 500 member companies in 27 countries.

“It is a great privilege to attend the conference and experience firsthand the information shared by top influences in the System Integrator market,” stated Linda Rawson, President, and CEO of DynaGrace Enterprises. “DynaGrace Enterprises has been heavily involved in Department of Defense work and is moving full forward in a growth opportunity in System Integration. The CSIA executive conference has provided additional insight and connections needed to enhance this growth opportunity while staying true to our core of providing exceptional personalized service to each of our valued clients.”

One of the highlights of CSIA is the certification program.  Certified companies experience growth by establishing known business practices that are audited and verified.  The certification lasts three years and provides a method for manufacturers to work with only certified businesses.

Many participants also report launching new products or services, discontinuing ineffective ones and expanding into new markets. They also report changes in the way they attract, manage and retain employees.  Many alliances and partnerships are established at the annual conference as well as establishing a great business model.

The attendance at the conference follows shortly after another significant milestone from DynaGrace Enterprises — the development of strategic partnerships in the area of Human Machine Interface (HMI).  DynaGrace Enterprises hopes to lead the field in integrating Virtual Reality into System Integration of Automation Solutions. This integration further supports DynaGrace Enterprises’s path of continued growth, maintaining itself as a provider of Information Technology services.

Customers can learn more about DynaGrace Enterprises by visiting the company’s website at DynaGrace.com or by calling the company directly at 800-676-0058.

What is Human Machine Interface or HMI?

What is Human Machine Interface or HMI?

As a company, we have established a growth opportunity in the System Integration of software into both Building and Industrial Automation.  The software should be simple and easy to use.  The software interface is commonly called Human Machine Interface (HMI).

In the simplest terms and as is illustrated in the following figure, a Human Machine Interface (HMI) is a User Interface (UI) that allows a human to interact with hardware in a simple, intuitive manner.  Usually, the UI is designed with a pleasant color scheme and much time is spent on ease of use.  Anymore, if a child cannot operate the UI, then the UI needs to be thrown away and redone.

Human Machine Interface (HMI)

HMI Simple Architecture

HMI Simple Architecture

Between the hardware and the UI is an interface that directs traffic and the UI interprets the signals provided by the hardware to present the human with alerts, status, and other information from the hardware.  The interface can also store information for historical trend information to be presented in the HMI as well.

Typically, a simple Industrial Automation site has several Programmable Logic Controller’s also known as PLC’s.  A PLC monitors the state of input devices and makes decisions based upon a custom program to control the state of output devices.

Programmable Logic Controller

Programmable Logic Controller

Programmable Logic Controller

The PLC is the traffic cop and can change an operation or process quickly while collecting and communicating vital data to the HMI.  PLC’s are modular and can be intertwined and have many data points flowing in real-time.  The customer can determine what information they want to see.

We apply the KISS principal to Interactive Human Machine Interfaces (HMI).  With all kinds of information available from automation systems, sometimes all the customer wants to see is something simple like Red, Green, and Yellow.  The idea is “simple” interfaces that are customized to what you want to see on their dashboard.

We work with the customer to determine exactly what they want to see.  The final product has THEIR logo, THEIR colors, and the menu options THEY want.  We do not use complex animations, and we try to keep text to a minimum so that they get a streamlined user experience that is very functional.

Visualization of Data

Although we will offer products on our website for purchase and have installers, we believe our growth opportunity is in the visualization of the data obtained from these products.

  • Being able to preserve existing investments in control and monitoring devices and integrating them with new standards-based technologies.
  • Ability to access and control ALL diverse systems through a standard web browser, smartphone or desktop application.
  • Combining information from different systems to support better overall facility management and control.
  • Being able to specify interoperable systems and applications from multiple vendors, thereby reducing the potential for vendor lock-in.
  • Multiple paybacks in the form of performance efficiencies, reduced capital, and operational expenses, and greater returns.

By comparison, the technological concept that makes it possible to integrate different systems is simple. Each building system is given a software agent or a hardware device that figuratively reads all of the transactions being carried by its particular system.

Energy and Load Management

The first step to an effective energy management program for a commercial building is to learn how and when each piece of equipment uses energy. The rate at which energy is used will vary throughout the day depending on usage and demand.  The demand is calculated, and monthly energy consumption is calculated.  The results may be surprising and a great selling point for a commercial building to invest in a BAS.

The electrical loads are calculated and off-peak times are determined.  Available electrical rate schedules are acquired to determine which can provide the lowest cost in conjunction with appropriate operational times.

Electricity is typically billed in two ways: by the quantity of energy used over a period, measured in kilowatt-hours; and by demand, the rate of flow of energy, measured in kilowatts. By choosing when and where to use electricity, commercial buildings can often save as much (or more) money as they could by reducing energy consumption.

 

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