The demand for skilled professionals who understand the exchange between information technology (IT) and operations technology (OT) is increasing as the industrial plant floor and corporate enterprise become more connected. In response, Rockwell Automation, in collaboration with Strategic Alliance partner Cisco, has launched a new training course to help IT and OT professionals overcome the challenges of converging their network technologies. The new training helps candidates prepare for the recently introduced Cisco Industrial Networking Specialist certification.
The hands-on, lab-based course, Managing Industrial Networks with Cisco Networking Technologies (IMINS), provides the foundational skills needed to manage and administer networked, industrial control systems, according to Rockwell Automation. The first-of-its-kind course is designed to help control system and traditional network engineers in manufacturing, process control, and oil and gas environments to better understand the networking technologies required to enable a connected enterprise for more profitable, real-time decision making.
“Establishing an effective connected enterprise requires seamless collaboration and integration between IT and OT professionals,” said Gary Pearsons, vice president and general manager, Customer Support and Maintenance Business, Rockwell Automation. “Our new training course empowers IT and OT professionals with the expertise they need to position their enterprises for future technology transitions. We’re fortunate to have an established partnership with Cisco to assist with curriculum development.”
According to Jeanne Beliveau-Dunn, vice president and general manager, Learning@Cisco, "The industrial plant floor is transforming as information and operational technologies expand IP networking and Ethernet connectivity. Today's workforce will need to prepare for tomorrow's evolving job roles. The demand for skilled professionals who understand how to interact with IT, networking and traditional control systems continues to grow. An opportunity exists here to re-skill system engineers and plant technicians on networking in order to help them more effectively do their jobs while decreasing downtime. The offerings provided by Cisco and Rockwell Automation, including the recently announced IMINS course, underscore our commitment to helping professionals overcome challenges surrounding technology transitions while also producing stronger business outcomes for organizations. Learners also gain a future-proof education, acquiring the expertise needed to perform future IT, OT and networking roles. With an anticipated 220,000 IT and OT engineers needed every year to scale the Internet of Things (IoT), Rockwell Automation and Cisco are taking the steps necessary to address the skills gap challenge."
Utilizing the combined experience of Rockwell Automation and Cisco in the industrial operations and IT spaces, Rockwell Automation says the IMINS course will help control system engineers and IT engineers to achieve competency and skills to install, maintain and troubleshoot industrial network systems. It will also help engineers to ensure network availability, reliability and cybersecurity across the connected enterprise, while learning how to interpret designs to recognize industrial topologies and access reference materials.
Students will get hands-on experience working on the Rockwell Automation suite of products to help converge technologies and bring the value of the connected enterprise to life.
The IMINS course is available for open enrollment in the United States with 28 classes planned through April 2015. Participants who enroll before Oct. 3 will receive a 10 percent discount. Classes will begin globally in October of this year.