- By Melissa Landon
- November 22, 2021
“Obtaining value from digital transformation is only possible if culture change is achieved,” said Dow Global Process Automation Technology Leader Paul Tomlin, during the ISA's Digital Transformation Virtual Conference.
Tomlin, who has worked with Dow since 2005 and has held his current title since 2012, noted that industrial automation professionals need to challenge their operating assumptions if they want to move forward into digital manufacturing. “When you’re improving value in a plant, there are two levers you can pull: operating cost improvement or asset utilization improvement,” he said.
Tomlin highlighted several strategies for identifying opportunities: target specific pain points, plan to measure value, and engage champions. “Champions” can be executive leadership, plant leadership and operators, he emphasized. The operator, or end user, is the most important person to get on board.
Before moving forward, consider user interface improvement, data platform integration and connectivity. “The best way to get a person to adopt a tool is to make it substantially better than what they had in the past,” Tomlin said. Just because a new tool is available does not mean operators will immediately adopt it. “Make sure the end user experience is very seriously considered in terms of building those tools, because that’s going to be a very important factor in adoption.” He also reminded listeners that digital technologies are a tool, an enabler.
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