Some of the best automation experts call Pyramid Solutions home. We know that Pyramid Solutions would not be thriving today without our most important assets  our people. To help take us to the next level, I am excited to introduce you to our newest Pyramidian, Brad Hicks.  

So, Brad, you’ve been at Pyramid for a couple of months now, why don’t you tell us a little bit about yourself? 
You, want to know about me? Well, we will have to at the very beginning. It all started on a partly cloudy day back in 1978 in Philadelphia where the morning started with a light drizzle… Okay, okay I’ll save you from all the boring details.

 

 To start, I am a loving husband (or so I am told) and have two wonderful kids (depending on the day) in which they surprise me every day on how smart they are. I lead our local Cub Scouts pack and regularly go camping and educational outings with the kids.

In my free time, I love to watch sports – Go Eagles! And when I am not watching them, you can find me exploring the country in our RV or spending time with my kids. 

Within regards to automation- I’ve been in the field for over 14 years, (hard to believe, it doesn’t feel that long) working for a Rockwell Automation distributor and other organizations helping the heavy industrial industry tackle some of the biggest automation challenges. In my time I’ve seen a lot of changes, but I think we are on the biggest one yet.

Changes? Can you elaborate on that?
Oh yeah sure, the industrial automation industry is in the beginning stages of a major shift with more and more manufactures adopting IIoT strategies. If you haven’t already,  you’re going to start seeing how real-time analytics impacts and enhances manufacturing operations not only from the plant floor but to decisions like picking suppliers to pack out and shipping procedures. 

Did you know that it is estimated that 152,000 IoT devices will be connected every minute…that’s nearly 80 billion devices annually!

Really? Wow that is a lot! I think we can create a whole other blog on that topic alone.  So, you joined the manufacturing team at Pyramid, what will you be doing?
What, I am here not just to look pretty? No, all kidding aside, my role here at Pyramid is what I have been doing throughout my own career – solving automation challenges for the industrial automation industry. Which is a good thing right?

Call me crazy but I get a kick out of optimizing manufacturing processes. I love the moment when I am with a client and they say “Thank you, Brad, we didn’t know this was even possible”. To me, that makes everything all worth it.

At Pyramid, my focus is on manufacturers and helping them integrate and capture real-time data from every level of their organization (factory floor to MES to ERP) and put all the production data into the cloud for advance reporting and analytics capabilities.

Where, or what do you see as the biggest challenges for industrial automation?
I think the biggest challenge in the automation and manufacturing industry is workforce-related.  The Baby Boomer generation is starting to retire and with them goes a lot of the knowledge around processes and technology.  The infrastructure of many facilities is filled with legacy equipment that needs to be migrated to Factory 4.0 focused solutions.  Finding the right employees and partners that not only understand these legacy systems but can also guide companies into the IIoT world is going to be a huge focus over the next decade.

If someone wanted to connect with you, how can they do so? 
Oh well that’s an easy question, anyone can reach me at bhicks@pyramidsolutions.com. I’d include my phone number, but I know you’re putting this on the website, so I’ll pass on the robo callers…

But yeah, email or LinkedIn is the best way.

Anything else you’d like to share? 
Yes of course, can I do my shameless plug in now?

Contact me if you’re in manufacturing and need help accessing and pulling real-time data from your production floor, if you need help on configuring reports and dashboards with that data or if you simply want to talk about systems to increase throughputs while reducing operation costs and defects.   

Hahah. Thanks Brad and welcome to the team!