Starting with securing support for the acceptance of ISA95, SAP is calling on customers and partners to participate in the development of roadmaps for the adoption of process industry standards. An additional objective of the program is to rally support for unresolved discrete industry standards, around which there is much indecision. Agreement on standards will enable tighter and more efficient integration of systems, helping customers drive down the costs of managing their manufacturing systems and redirect operational expenses into areas like innovation. Beginning June 2004, SAP will host a series of interactive workshops with customers and shop floor ISVs, culminating with an industry summit on standards to be held in conjunction with SAP’s technical education conference, SAP TechEd, in October 2004.
“We welcome and are supportive of suppliers’ initiatives to align with industry standards for manufacturing operations management,” said Ray Walker, principal consultant, Du Pont Engineering. “We are committed to supporting standards like ANSI/ISA-95 that are key to enabling collaborative real-time manufacturing operations.”
Support from leading global solution providers
The current lack of standards agreement is adversely affecting enterprisewide information flow, which in turn hinders visibility across manufacturing processes and affects a company’s ability to adapt to events that impact manufacturing operations. SAP has already received confirmation for support and participation in the standards program from leading manufacturing solution providers like Siemens, Rockwell Automation, Honeywell, OSISoft Inc., the Wonderware and ArchestrA business units of Invensys, Emerson Process Management, Apriso Corporation, Lighthammer Software Development Corp., FORCAM GmbH, PSI-BT Business Technology for Industries AG, MPDV Mikrolab GmbH and ABB Group. “Given SAP’s reputation in the global manufacturing ecosystem and the breadth of SAP’s manufacturing solutions, SAP’s support of any standards gives those standards immediate validation,” said Bob Mick, V.P. Emerging Technology, ARC Advisory Group. “We believe that the adoption rate of standards like ISA-95 can also be positively impacted should SAP decide to build the requirements into its solution.”
Existing support for industry-specific standards
SAP is already actively driving the adoption of various industry standards and supports industry data exchange standards including RosettaNet (high tech), the Chem eStandards, UCCNet (consumer products and retail industries), papiNet (paper industry), HL7 (healthcare) and PIDX (oil and gas industries) and is helping to drive enhanced compatibility of applications and business processes in close cooperation with vertical- and cross-industry standards initiatives such as ACORD (insurance), AIAG (automotive), CWM (business intelligence), GCI (consumer products and retail), HR-XML (human resources), OPC (process industries), SPEC2000 (aerospace and defense), S.W.I.F.T. (banking), TWIST (treasury), VICS (supply chain management) and XBRL (accounting).
“As companies continue to drive operational efficiency and inventory levels drop, manufacturing is increasingly becoming the response buffer to manage variability across the supply chain,” said Claus Heinrich, member of the executive board, SAP AG. “The ability to tightly integrate core manufacturing with other business operations is vital to managing a truly adaptive business. Given the heterogeneity of most shop floor applications, the onus is on the vendor community to agree on standards that enable easy interoperability and movement of information across manufacturing systems that customers already own or are in the process of implementing.”
While standards provide the framework for consolidating industrywide consensus, an integration layer is a prerequisite for the effective translation of disparate IT landscapes into real-time operations. Leveraging the SAP NetWeaver open integration and application platform, a key value proposition of this new “shop floor to top floor” program will be the support of enhanced interoperability across SAP and non-SAP systems. The resulting integration will further realize SAP’s adaptive manufacturing vision by enabling significant increase of opportune access to information within the heterogeneous IT silos that exist in many manufacturing operations, effectively reducing the total cost of ownership. Customers will benefit from real-time capturing of information from shop floor systems and the rapid and systematic analysis and dissemination of this information to relevant manufacturing personnel, without the need to build multiple expensive adaptors.
Shop Floor partner program to drive SAP NetWeaver integration
With the goal of driving integration of manufacturing systems far beyond data exchange, SAP announced that it will launch a shop floor partner program in September aimed at creating a constituency of companies that leverage SAP NetWeaver to provide shop floor applications that are seamlessly integrated with SAP’s manufacturing solutions. The SAP manufacturing partner program will build upon the successful “Powered by SAP NetWeaver” partner program through which many companies are building applications based on SAP NetWeaver technology.
Source: SAP AG