Keeping a Distribution Warehouse’s IT/OT Networks Current and Out of Obsolescence

A material handling company wanted their network integrated and optimized. Our automation engineers documented and assessed the client’s IT/OT Infrastructure to help identify critical components near obsolescence or end of life.

The Project: Present the Best Project Design for an IT/OT Overhaul

A large material handling client saw an opportunity for IT/OT convergence, a need to identify vulnerabilities, potential obsolescence, and wanted to push for network optimization.  Because we have a good working relationship with this client, we were immediately one of the integrators considered to do the work and the request for a bid was sent over. 

The Challenge: Impress the Client, Win the Multi-Facility Bid

E Tech Group, along with another vendor were given the opportunity to perform an initial assessment and based on the results would determine who was awarded this project.  If awarded, E Tech Group engineers would be responsible for walking all 32 of their facilities to assess their IT and OT networks while compiling a list of requested data presented in their proposal.

The Solution: End-To-End IT/OT Analysis & Boots on the Ground

To begin, their IT provided our team documentation around program files for PLCs, HMIs, Drives and we were granted Visios to view network topology. We then requested and were given some network access using different protocols to show where their PLCs, HMIs and Drives were connected on their IT network so they could see deeper into their topology rather than just where their IT switches were. 

Once this information was gathered, compiled and returned, it was time to walk the site. We began by utilizing an app that was reworked to help us gather and consolidate the data required for the assessment.  Our engineers went panel by panel collecting the requested data and pictures. 

From there, it was all entered into the app and allowed us to produce a spreadsheet helping facilitate the build of the first asset database. It then took us a couple of weeks to organize everything into usable data that would allow them to identify the lifecycle of all at risk items that might soon fall into obsolescence and would require optimization or need to be replaced. 

The Results: An IT/OT Revamp Across Dozens of Facilities

Utilizing the report provided by our team, the customer liked the work we had and done and decided to have us alone move forward in walking their remaining facilities to compile the same kind of assessment. 

Learn more about IT/OT assessments: the process, the benefits and how E Tech Group can be your partner through it all!

Begin Your Journey to Industry 4.0

Download our Beginner’s Guide to IT/OT Assessments to gain an understanding of what an IT/OT Assessment is, its benefits, and how to get started today.

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