Control System Integrators Association (CSIA) Affiliates
One Parkview Plaza Suite 800 Oakbrook Terrace IL 60181 United States
Phone 1847-686-2245
Phone 2 800-661-4914

Latest Updates

  • PostedThursday, July 18,2019 at 10:50 AM
    This episode of Talking Industrial Automation explores the role of robots in manufacturing and how they will impact the workforce, automation and system integration.
    Talking Industrial Automation : Jeff Burnstein of the Association of Advancing Automation - Episode 28
    Jeff Burnstein is president of the Association of Advancing Automation, the umbrella organization for the Robotic Industries Association, Advancing Vision and Imaging, and Motion Control and Motor Association. In this episode, Burnstein predicts the ...
  • PostedTuesday, July 9,2019 at 3:43 PM
    Mike Howard, VP system integration for George T. Hall Co.,  reveals his lessons learned from scaling up quickly to meet customer demand and the challenges his clients are facing.
    Talking Industrial Automation : Mike Howard of George T. Hall Company - Episode 27
    Mike Howard is vice president, system integration for George T. Hall Co., which got its start in California but has since expanded into Nevada. He shares his experiences with CSIA certification and how it helped GTH manage a recent growth spurt. Plus ...
  • PostedTuesday, May 28,2019 at 4:33 PM
    Meet Zack Scriven, an industrial controls engineer turned video marketing entrepreneur, and discover how to attract and retain talent, run a successful business, and get started with video.
    Talking Industrial Automation : Zack Scriven of Zack Scriven Media - Episode 26
    In this episode of Talking Industrial Automation, Zack Scriven, founder and lead content creator of Zack Scriven Media, shares his journey from industrial automation engineer to video marketing entrepreneur.  Along the way, you'll hear his ...
  • PostedFriday, May 24,2019 at 11:41 AM
    Talking Industrial Automation : Joe LaRussa of Brose Group -- Episode 25
    In this episode of Talking Industrial Automation, Joe LaRussa, director of industrial engineering for the North American Seat Business at Brose Group, provides his take on the global war on talent, as well as reveal his successful strategy for primin ...
  • PostedFriday, April 5,2019 at 8:03 PM
    Talking Industrial Automation : Rick Kaun of Verve Industrial - Episode 24
    In this episode of Talking Industrial Automation, Rick Kaun, VP of solutions for Verve Industrial Protection, shares his take on the unique role cybersecurity plays in a control system or operational environment.  He also breaks down the cu ...
  • PostedThursday, February 14,2019 at 4:04 PM
    Talking Industrial Automation: Jose Rivera of Control System Integrators Association -- Episode 23
    Thinking about attending the 2019 CSIA Executive Conference? In this episode of Talking Industrial Automation, CSIA CEO Jose Rivera reveals what's new at this year's event, schedule highlights, as well as what's back by popular demand. Programming no ...
  • PostedTuesday, March 20,2018 at 10:26 AM
    Listen to Sam Hoff of Patti Engineering at the Manufacturing in America conference in Detroit. Learn how he named his company, what he does the first 90 minutes of his day, and what the first couple years was like when he started.
  • PostedThursday, August 31,2017 at 4:03 PM
    Here's how to choose a system integrator:
    How to Properly Select and Vet a Systems Integrator | Automation World
    The process of finding a qualified systems integrator for your automation project requires effort and attention to the details. Experience,...
  • PostedThursday, September 1,2016 at 12:51 PM
    CSIA announces upgrades to Industrial Automation Exchange |
    The CSIA Exchange now features its own blog, largely authored by its system integrator members and member partners. It has also incorporated a new library-resources section.
  • PostedWednesday, June 29,2016 at 9:02 AM
    The Smart Manufacturing Innovation Institute, headquartered in Los Angeles, CA, brings over $140 million in public-private investment from leading universities and manufacturers to develop smart sensors for use in advanced manufacturing.
    FACT SHEET: President Obama Announces Winner of New Smart Manufacturing Innovation Institute and New Manufacturing Hub Competitions |
    Jump to main content
  • PostedThursday, June 23,2016 at 3:45 PM

    Today is National Women in Engineering Day! Let's spread the word about National Women in Engineering Day and share about the great work other women in engineering are doing. Perhaps we can inspire young girls and women to follow their footsteps. Tweet to ##nwed2016 if you want to share the message. Read an article on Scientific American's website below.
  • PostedTuesday, June 7,2016 at 2:12 PM

    In order to more effectively manage and maintain the county’s sanitary sewer system, which includes 3,500 miles of sewer lines stretching across a 420 square mile area, Pima County Wastewater Department implemented Wonderware's unique HMI Situational Awareness framework during a recent SCADA system upgrade. Using the Wonderware solution, the wastewater treatment facility was able to double capacity while operating using the same number of staff. In total, Pima County achieved about a 50 percent increase in overall operational efficiency while driving down the cost of doing business through centralized monitoring and control of the entire wastewater system, including treatment plants and pump stations.

    Join us for an interactive discussion with Pima County’s Larry Sawicki and Clyde Pace of EMA, Inc., learn from their challenges, and discover how a modern SCADA system can help your public utility to:

    • Easily consolidate heterogeneous control and data acquisition products into one unified SCADA system
    • Migrate from the manual collection of data and logbooks to more accessible electronic records that meet state, federal and environmental regulations
    • Optimize alarm management using goal-oriented designs, effective window structure, color usage, and actionable alarm management to immediately identify problems before they escalate
    • Implement Situational Awareness to improve decision support Having a single source of actionable information for operational, engineering and corporate business users allows organizations to move to an adaptive (vs. reactive) model, and allows operators to proactively detect—and fix—abnormal disturbances.

    Having a single source of actionable information for operational, engineering and corporate business users allows organizations to move to an adaptive (vs. reactive) model, and allows operators to proactively detect—and fix—abnormal disturbances.

    Sign up for the webinar below!

    Pima County’s Wastewater SCADA Modernization Boosts Operational Efficiency While Driving Down Cost | Automation World
    In order to more effectively manage and maintain the county’s sanitary sewer system, which includes 3,500 miles of sewer lines stretching across a 420 square mile area, Pima County Wastewater Department implemented Wonderware's unique HMI Situational Awareness framework during a recent SCADA system upgrade.
  • PostedFriday, May 13,2016 at 10:04 AM

    The Control System Integrators Association (CSIA), the only global and nonprofit trade association for system integrators, is marking a five-year period of sustained growth.

    Since 2009, CSIA has experienced annual increases in overall membership and revenue.

    “CSIA’s total member numbers are up 50% and world membership has doubled as we focus the CSIA value proposition message on Latin America and Europe,” said Bob Lowe, executive director of CSIA. “This shows there is optimism in the system integration industry, which helps boost the effectiveness of our members and further establishes CSIA as a global industry leader.”

    The good news for CSIA comes as the U.S. economy marks another consecutive month of growth, according to the latest Manufacturing Institute for Supply Management ISM Report on Business. The survey of manufacturing supply managers shows that industries served by CSIA’s members, such as food and beverage, metals, petroleum and chemicals, are seeing an increase in orders for exports and a rise in employment.

    As CSIA grows, the association is improving services for members and industry clients, especially with the recent launch of the Industrial Automation Exchange. CSIA created the Exchange website to better connect system integrators and suppliers with those who are looking for automation solutions.

    “CSIA members offer system integration expertise in today’s sophisticated manufacturing and industrial environments. They know how to use the latest technology,” Lowe added. “Operations managers, directors of quality assurance and many others are logging on to the Exchange and conveniently searching for the right people and products to help drive company growth and productivity, and to manage risk for their business.”

    CSIA’s integrator and partner members provide services, solutions and products for control and information system integration. To learn more about the Exchange, visit

    CSIA - Automation System Integrator Exchange|Guide|Search|Directory|Supplier
    Automated manufacturing, production, plant, industrial process engineers can research and find systems and process engineers.
  • PostedWednesday, February 3,2016 at 10:48 AM
    Engaged employees are the best protection. Employees are the weakest link in industrial security, so they need to be trained, tested and engaged to protect their systems. What is being done to protect the malware-vulnerable programmable memory of the PLCs of critical facilities? Anything? It is possible to program a PLC memory and then program a lockdown so the memory becomes write-once rather than write-always, and thus would be immune to malware attacks. Because, for example, nuclear power plants, hydroelectric dams and pipeline systems, are essentially steady-state in operation, then a write-once memory would have to be differently programmed to effect a change in the operation of the machinery controlled by the PLC. Thus, a technician from the control room would take the new memory down to the PLC. Follow the link to read the entire article on PLC cyber security.
  • PostedFriday, January 15,2016 at 10:53 AM

    In today’s day and age, when companies want to stay ahead of the game they need all their systems to work synchronously. Systems that are not integrated result in significant increases in cost and resource consumption. Read on to find out reasons stated by the Control System Integrators Association (CSIA), a not-for-profit, global trade association that seeks to advance the industry of control system integration. 

    Defining systems integration in an industrial setting is the first step in explaining its importance. Industrial system integrators typically are independent entities that use technical and project management activities to integrate commercially available hardware and software from multiple suppliers into a solution for an end-user client. System integrators’ technical expertise commonly includes electrical design, engineering, programming, testing, commissioning and ongoing support. System integration entities may be standalone companies or business units within an equipment supplier or distributor. What they have in common is that they provide control, automation and information solutions for manufacturing and industrial processes.

    Having defined system integration, let’s address the purpose of this article – describing the importance of system integration. Here are 10 reasons why system integration is important to industrial end-user clients.

     1.    Saving the end-user client personnel costs By using independent system integrators, industrial clients save the cost of hiring, personnel evaluation, continuous education, time to stay current on technology, and so forth. Additionally, it is difficult for a non-system integration company to select the right people, and bad hires are an expensive mistake. However, it is advisable to have a small internal staff to manage projects that are contracted to system integrators. The size of that staff depends on the magnitude of projects that are performed. For example, there are many industry standards that apply to automation and information systems that an end-user client may find challenging. Examples are ISA99 on cyber security, ISA100 on wireless communications and ISA101 on human machine interface devices. Does an end-user client really want to invest in their own staff learning and implementing these standards? A system integrator makes the educational investment. Then, that cost is amortized over many clients and projects, to the benefit of all.

    2.    Improving the quality and reliability of the integration project No one person or company knows everything. The system integrator often brings to the table an understanding of mechanical, process and business intelligence issues and knows how to integrate those disciplines into a working system. That’s why our industry is called system integration – we integrate! A common mistake in manufacturing and process industries is that managers wait until later in the project development to contract a system integrator, thinking they have little to offer upfront, yet that couldn’t be further from the truth. It’s best when system integrators are involved in the earliest planning stages so they can contribute their knowledge and expertise and save costs and improve outcomes.

    3.    Accountability for time and resources System integrators must remain on budget to maintain a sustainable business. Whether contracts are fixed or variable, costs, labor and materials must be managed based on the upfront plan and contract. In short, system integrators are accountable for time and resources. Contracts always have definitions of scope of supply of services and products and also an associated cost structure. The system integrator, for internal purposes and for client relations, must honor the agreement. When a project is implemented by internal project staff, that accountability is often minimized. An attitude of ‘it’ll take as long as it takes’ can exist, so budgets and schedules sometimes suffer.

    4.    Knowing and applying current industry standards in safety, environmental and modern technology Examples of these standards are networks, cyber security and interoperability of equipment. End-user clients can rely on system integrators to get updates on topics such as machine safety, process safety, international programming standards, networks for intelligent instrumentation, network standards to prevent cyber attacks and so on. Granted, there are some standards and regulations on which it’s best for the end-user clients to remain current, typically ones that pertain specifically to their industry. However, it’s incumbent on the system integrator to be knowledgeable about the majority of standards.

    5.    Bringing innovation and experience from working across industries A large majority of system integrators work in multiple vertical industries. Examples would be consumer products and food and beverage. An integrator may gain experience in an application such as batch processing, material handling and packaging in the Source: CSIA System integration allows for making the best-in-class products from multiple suppliers work in tandem 1 2 3 4 5 16 PROCESS India Volume 1 · Issue 6 · June 2014 COVER STORY production of hand cream. Then in another project involving the production of chocolate syrup, the production efficiencies and improvements in quality realized in the hand cream application will transfer to chocolate syrup. Their inherent exposure to different industries results in a breadth of knowledge that can’t be learnt at a show, through training or from a magazine. It comes from doing projects. System integrators learn to recognize when the experience gained in one application and industry can be applied in another. This capacity allows system integrators to bring innovative solutions to resolve an end-user client’s challenges.

    6.    Having the right skill set for project management and execution Project management and execution skills are very different skill sets. A good system integrator has both. An indication of the importance of these skills to the success of a project is that three of the nine sections of the CSIA Business Best Practices and Benchmarks Manual focus on project management and execution. Those skills are included in a good system integration company’s best practices and make the difference in project success or failure.

    7.    Knowing how to manage project risks Risk is the most significant enemy of a system integrator, so it is taken seriously. Recognizing project risks comes with experience and is a natural process for integrators. Risk management begins at the planning phase of a project and emphasizes once again what was mentioned in the second reason above, namely the importance of a system integrator being involved in the early stages of a project. It stands to reason that good risk management is in the best interest of the end-user clients even though a client-integrator risk discussion can be uncomfortable.

    8.    Providing proper documentation for future reference It’s common for internal staff to move onto the next project and not properly provide drawings, software code and operations manuals. The staff often has good intentions of doing the documentation but it just gets pushed to the background with hopes of doing it later, but later never comes. Since final documentation is typically included in the contracted scope of supply for the system integrator, the integrator is held accountable for providing it and the end-user client can be assured of getting it. Proper documentation is important for maintenance, support and scalability.

    9.    Choosing the best hardware and software for an application Knowing what products are available for an automation solution is important. And knowing which ones are the best solutions is equally important. Independent system integrators are not tethered to any one automation supplier, so they act in the best interest of the end-user client when making selections. And as system integrators they know how to integrate – how to make best-in-class products from multiple suppliers work in tandem. Some product suppliers also do system integration work but they are biased towards their own products. Therefore, even if those products are not the best solution and don’t deliver the highest value, they are used anyway. Thereby, the full potential of a project will not be recognized.

    10. Providing expert technical staff on demand End-user clients sometimes have a temporary need for additional staff to assist internal staff when there are too many concurrent projects. Most system integrators can provide engineers, designers, programmers and so forth during those busy periods. Coming from a system integration company, the personnel are effective immediately after safety orientation. When the project load diminishes, they simply return the integrator. There are personnel staffing companies but those from system integrators are inherently more efficient plus equally capable backup is available, if necessary. Are all system integrators created equal? No. As in all industries, some companies are better than others. So how does an end-user client differentiate a good system integrator from a not-so-good one? System integrators who become certified by the Control System Integrators Association have demonstrated through an independent audit, conducted every three years, that they uphold the CSIA’s best practices for management. 

    This article originally appeared in PROCESS India Volume 1 · Issue 6 · June 2014 and was written by Bob Lowe, Former Executive Director of the Control Systems Integrators Association.