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Selo engineers ready to get started right after training itsme

Imagine how valuable it would be if what you learned fits seamlessly into your every day practice – and when you are able to apply that new knowledge directly to your own projects. At Selo in Hengelo (the Netherlands) they can tell you all about it. The training on multi-user functionality in Siemens TIA Portal by itsme Industrial Automation was a customised one. With all the benefits for Selo’s software engineers.

Maybe it was not just a matter of coincidence. It was exactly in 2019, the year in which Selo celebrated their 75th anniversary, when they also received that mega order of 25 million euros. It was the largest ever in the history of the company, which is regarded as a specialist in processing and packaging systems for the food and pharmaceutical industry, among others. From the locations in Hengelo and Oldenzaal, machines and packaging travel all over the world, to sites of Unilever and Mars, just to name a few.

It is no coincidence that these multinationals rely on Selo. Selo masters every step of the production process, documenting everything with the same precision. The majority of roughly fifty suppliers are located within fifty kilometres of Hengelo, which enables them to anticipate quickly. In order to serve their large customer database, which requires an order flow which is both specific and fast, Selo builds according to standardised modules within the configure-to-order principle.

Production of artificial casings

Innovative or not, all still depends on the knowledge of your own employees. Currently, there are around 140 in the Netherlands who, in addition to working on the processing and packaging systems, also contribute to Selo's production of artificial casings. Getting things done is what they do at Selo. Which definitely applies to their engineers, who specifically develop designs and concepts for each individual project. You could easily call these engineers versatile. And they are a big fan of clear and smooth processes, which also applies to the Siemens TIA Portal environment.

“Getting started yourself is the common theme in all itsme training courses”

For a future assignment, the software engineers wanted to learn more about the multi-user functionality integrated in the TIA Portal platform. It would enable them to work on the project simultaneously, in real-time, with the latest status available at any given moment – and moreover, it would provide them with the advantage of automatic backups. But where did the engineers have to start? How could they set up such an environment as efficiently as possible? And what should they take into consideration?

Concise and yet detailed

Selo approached itsme. The two companies have been working together for some time, and asked itsme Industrial Automation for training on the multi-user functionality in the TIA Portal package. The training course needed to be concise. At the same time, it had to be comprehensive enough and sufficiently in-depth to meet the needs of all software engineers. Product specialist Tim Ackermans took care of it on behalf of itsme, with customised one-day in-company training at Selo. He deliberately combined theory and practice. Tim: “First, I showed the engineers the functionalities. After this, they applied these themselves, based on their own cases. The latter works great since practice is specifically appealing”.

“Time is scarce so what we learn has to make sense”

Tim is very much satisfied about the course of the training session and Tom Papen, responsible within Selo for the engineering team, is evenly enthusiastic. With years of experience as an engineer, Tom knows the value of clear, hands-on functionalities. “There was plenty of room for it during this day. Training was dynamic, and with a group of six software engineers just right in terms of size."

Getting started

During the training course, six Selo hardware engineers joined in online to listen. Tom also attended sideways. “Nevertheless, I absorbed enough to be sure that it was very practical. It works well for our software engineers. They prefer getting started themselves over too much theory. It is the common theme in all of the itsme training courses, of which we already attended several. Another one is soon to come by the way, focused on safety within TIA Portal.”

At itsme Industrial Automation they know the need among companies for more knowledge about the multi-user functionality within Siemens TIA Portal. That is why Tim and his fellow product specialists now provide the training course not only custom made but also as regular training session. Tom himself would certainly recommend it. “Time is scarce for all of us so what we do learn has to make sense. Which was definitely the case with this training course. "

Selo joining forces with Omori

Combining efforts can really speed up things. At Selo, they know all about it. The company was located in Oldenzaal for many years, until in 2015 they set up a business collaboration with Japanese company Omori. Omori became main shareholder while Selo became the new location of Omori Europe B.V. Two companies under the same roof soon turned out to be too tight, after which Selo moved most of its own activities to a new address in Hengelo. Thanks to the cooperation with Omori, Selo benefits from a wider and worldwide network of customers and a larger market, far beyond European borders. The number of employees also grew considerably in recent years, to 140 in the Netherlands. 35 people work at Selo's sales and service offices in Belgium, Denmark and England.

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