Company Role

Alarm Management By Company Role

On-going alarm management improvement for someone in Operations is likely a significant issue, especially if an incident just occurred where an operator or controller was inundated with alarms. For someone in Engineering, alarms may have been a key focus as part of a control system upgrade project where much consideration went into initial alarm limits in the new system but the engineer has since moved on to another project.

How you view alarm management is largely dependent on your role within the organization

Alarm management is inherently complex because it involves many different perspectives and is relevant to various parts of an organization. At TiPS, we understand this and consider it a part of our responsibility to simplify alarm management for you regardless of your role or perspective. LogMate has been designed with this in mind.

Whether you are in Operations, Engineering, IT or Management, TiPS provides an alarm management solution that addresses your needs and delivers improvements that matter to you.

Operations Perspective

Ever been inundated with alarms, unclear of which alarms are related, or confused about what actions to take for a given alarm? Find out how LogMate can help now.

Engineering Perspective

Been spending too much time on incident investigations? Wondering how to best tackle cleaning up alarms without spending a fortune?
TiPS understands and can help.

IT Perspective

Challenged with integrating another software package into your existing IT infrastructure?
Looking for an easy to maintain, inexpensive solution? LogMate is the answer.

Management Perspective

Looking to resolve alarm problems that dilute focus and consume valuable resource time? Want to view real-time alarm management metrics? Get started with TiPS.

LogMate makes it easy to incorporate alarm management tasks
into everyday operational activities

As the ultimate "user" of the alarm system, Operations is uniquely positioned to monitor alarm performance, recognize issues and prompt an alarm management effort. You are the individuals dealing with the daily frustration of nuisance alarms, alarm floods, confusing alarm relationships, and bad actors that take your time and focus away from other operational tasks.

When Operations takes a leadership role in alarm system design, you’re empowered to prioritize alarm review and to ensure that the alarm management design supports and enhances your efforts to maintain normal operating states.

We understand that while having a significant role in managing alarms makes perfect sense, you have a lot of other things to worry about and don’t want to be bogged down analyzing alarm activity, debating design details, or chasing people around the plant trying to get approval for a change. That’s why TiPS designed LogMate to help you easily manage and maintain the alarm system as a part of normal, everyday operational tasks.

LogMate improves control of the alarm management process

Most operating teams use a combination of activity assessments and operator identification to flag alarms for review. Using LogMate analysis and reports to assess alarm activity will tell you statistically which alarms should be reviewed, but practically, we also realize many alarm issues are identified by someone in the control room pointing an angry finger at a flashing red light on their control system screen and saying, "Fix it!" LogMate provides organized and relevant alarm information to support Operations in both approaches, and balances them very nicely.

LogMate software makes implementing an alarm management program inexpensive and straightforward

Engineers are absolutely swamped for time. Alarm management just looks like more to put on a plate that’s already full. Alarm management doesn’t appear very interesting either. There are no algorithms to tweak or models to train. As such, engineers are eager to solve the alarm problem and get back to work.

However, you typically have to develop the project requirements, finalize project costs, evaluate available solutions and design implementation strategies. You have to worry about how alarm management integrates into your existing plant considering things like connectivity to control systems and accessibility of information to a broad spectrum of users.

Daily alarm issues become easier for Operations to identify and resolve

TiPS designed LogMate so that it has one of the most flexible and extensive connectivity portfolios in the industry. Our approach to LogMate has been to leverage the power of Microsoft SQL® and Microsoft Internet Explorer® to lower the total cost of ownership while maximizing reliability with standard interface approaches. As a result, we consistently hear from engineers who are pleased with the ease of installation and high reliability, low maintenance aspects of LogMate.

LogMate is a powerful tool with extensive capabilities

Often, engineers look at the alarm management problem as a huge undertaking that is an all or nothing affair. We don’t think that is true. At TiPS, we have seen substantial improvements made in taking care of a handful of the worst alarm issues. While alarm management can seem overwhelming at first glance, TiPS can help guide you through the process from alarm philosophy development to rationalization, implementation and eventual monitoring and auditing phases.

LogMate is a powerful tool with extensive capabilities for the engineer in the upfront phases of alarm management such as rationalization. However, engineers also benefit from the flexible and easy-to-use analysis tools that empower Operations to take more ownership in alarm management. Daily alarm issues become easier for Operations to identify and work to resolve without requiring as much time from engineering resources.

LogMate simplifies IT tasks and reduces IT costs
associated with alarm management implementation

The first thought for many in IT when they hear about alarm management is, “Oh, great, another software package trying to talk between the plant and business network.”

We feel your pain and our software is designed with your frustrations in mind. We’ve been developing software since 1990, and have worked through the transition from fat-client to thin-client along about the same timeline as the transition from proprietary network infrastructures to Ethernet and PC-based automation hardware. You’ll be happy to know that our LogMate software package is built to minimize IT headaches.

As the line between automation and business infrastructure continues to blur, we find ourselves sitting at conference tables talking about firewalls and security policies as much as tweaking process alarm settings to improve operations. Lucky for us, as a software company, we are adept at providing a bridge between the two perspectives. We respect and admire the tremendous task that IT oversees – balancing the need for fast and broad information transfer while maintaining security and stability. We haven’t yet run into a comparable product that can match LogMate’s flexibility and ease of implementation.

LogMate leverages widely used technologies

To prevent or minimize the need to learn new methodologies, we run on Microsoft® desktop and server operating systems, use a standard Microsoft SQL Server database as our backend, and rely on Microsoft IIS to host our .NET ASP web services. The LogMate product has a modular design to accommodate various network approaches and policies. There is no requirement to load software on workstation machines.

Another benefit to LogMate is that we have designed it with an extremely flexible architecture that allows centralized or distributed architectures of varying complexities. The modular approach to LogMate means that we can locate various components within your network infrastructure in the optimal way to meet your unique needs.

Implementing alarm management best practices
is good for business

As a manager of one or possibly numerous sites, chances are you have more than a few responsibilities. You might wonder where alarm management fits into the priorities and what the value is when compared to other projects.

Not only is alarm management a detailed regulatory requirement in some industries but also a recognized good engineering practice that is enforceable by most government agencies if an incident does occur. However, beyond compliance, good alarm management programs improve operational performance; reduce maintenance cost and lower incident occurrence risk. An added benefit is the reduced stress level on operations personnel that is part of good Control Room Management (CRM) and Human Factors (HF) design.

As a manager, you likely don’t have the time to get involved on a personal basis with individual alarm issues. With LogMate, your teams are provided with meaningful alarm information that helps them identify and correct many of the alarm problems directly. As a manager, you likely want metrics and KPI’s in place to track the alarm management performance to ensure that it improves and is consistent on an on-going basis.

Desktop monitoring and business intelligence dashboards

Using netView and ACE analysis views and reporting combined with TRAC KPI’s give you the capability to regularly monitor alarm management performance from your desktop using a standard Microsoft Internet Explorer® Browser. This combined with the ability to drill down to more detail provides you with essential and timely alarm information to make better informed business decisions.

Many of our customers are also leveraging the power of LogMate data to populate a variety of business intelligence dashboards.