Most manufacturers will start their search for a systems integrator by asking their component manufacturer who they would recommend. It’s a smart move because component manufacturers will know who’s done similar projects in the past. Most importantly, they will probably recommend credible integrators since their product line’s success hinges upon a successful integration. Component manufacturers are a good place to start, but some integrations are more complex than others. There are a few other factors to look for in your systems integrator before bringing them onboard with your project.
Experience is one thing, but standardization is what makes a project quick and affordable. You don’t want your integrator to reinvent the wheel or “learn” at your expense. Having standardized procedures and programming code libraries from past experiences that they can modify to fit your project requirements shortens the design phase. Feel free to ask your integrator what best practices they’ve incorporated in their standards, so you know they aren’t wasting time and money by starting from scratch.
If someone is an expert in a certain area, they should have documentation. You should always check to make sure your integrators are certified in the skill set required for your project. The important part is that you know they’ve had formal training and extensive hands-on experience. By having the certification you are assured that the integrator is the subject matter expert that can answer questions as they arise during a project and quickly bring them to resolution. If an integrator is asking questions that seem off-key or basic, it is a red flag.
Visiting your systems integrator is always a good idea. You want to be able to see for yourself that they have the resources necessary to complete the project on time. During your visit, you can review an integrators resources, certifications, and standardization developed from previous projects. When you feel comfortable, you can have a discussion that covers your expectations so they understand the best way to move forward. Here are 3 keys to a successful systems integration project.