#pAutomator: Luis Arcos, Endress+Hauser
We recently spoke to Luis Arcos, Application Engineer, Endress+Hauser, Spain, for our #pAutomator interview. Arcos is responsible for identifying customer requirements and also supports the product selection process.
In this interaction, Arcos explains the importance of analyzing a customer´s requirement by listening to the queries carefully, while speaking about the latest digital practices used in the industry.
Excerpts from the interview…
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What made you choose this industry? Looking back, any memorable experience you would like to share?
Honestly, my career in the industry has been brief. The instrumentation and the automatization of processes is a huge world. I have only been involved in it for two years now, after finishing my degree in Chemical Engineering in Barcelona.
However, I have two memorable moments to share: One of them was my first time in the field as an Endress+Hauser Application Engineer. This is because in that instant I realized that implementing instrumentation could be very challenging.
Though it seems easy on paper, the reality is different. Because of that experience, I look at customer demands from the point of view of the customer. For example, what difficulties are we going to find in the plant is what I consider.
My second memorable moment is my visit to one of our product centers. There, I had the opportunity to see technologies and the future of this industry. This discovery really impacted my work routine.
Currently, I try to learn as much as I can. This is because there will be many changes in the coming years and I want to be ready. I do not want to be left behind.
What are the responsibilities you cater to?
As part of the marketing department in the Endress+Hauser Sales Center, Spain, I support our sales department by trying to find the best solution to our customer’s problems.
For this, I use the great portfolio of Endress+Hauser. Every day I face challenging applications that require creativity and familiarity with the industry to find the best device for the application. Of course, this includes meeting the requirements of the customer.
What are the major customer demands in your industry? Can you share any unique customer query that you’ve resolved?
Frequently, the most in-demand products are those that solve flowmeter applications. This is due to the kind of measurement used. For this reason, the demand is quite high. Nevertheless, the demand to optimize applications with liquid analysis devices is growing.
For example, the sensors and devices are growing their resistance daily. Currently, they can handle a lot of Cip Sip Cycles. These kinds of improvements in liquid analysis devices make me think that in the future the demand for this instrumentation will grow as we create affordable sensors with better properties.
Regarding the second question, it´s really difficult to choose one! We solve a lot of issues successfully! Of course, there are some that are more memorable than others.
Recently, we successfully solved an application with a very viscous liquid, thanks to the Conditioning Monitoring option of the Heartbeat Technology. The customer was having problems with the flow measurement. He was issuing a lot of deviations in the measurement caused by buildup in the tubes.
As soon as he followed our recommendations to upgrade his flowmeter with Heartbeat Technology, the customer and the maintenance team was able to set an alarm each time the Promass (Coriolis) flowmeter tubes started to have buildup. With this improvement, he could predict the maintenance of his flow measurement 24/7 accurately.
Meeting customer requirements has always been vital. How do you recommend helping customers choose the right instrument for their application?
Listening is the key for me. Each little commentary is important. When a customer explains the wishes or problems they want to solve, they are also transmitting details you can use to solve or fulfil their wishes.
For instance, if a customer asks for a radar to measure his tanks and he is worried about the commissioning, I try to show the advantages of wireless technology and the alternatives. At present, even smartphones can help us set up a radar to do an accurate measurement.
A laptop or an operating manual is not necessary, just an app and a smartphone are enough. These examples show that the details can help us communicate the added value of our products to our customers. Simply meeting the requirements is not my goal. Rather, I always try to go above and beyond in my recommendations.
With digital practices in place, how do you see the industry dynamics currently?
Well, I have the feeling that we have adopted digital practices in our personal lives than in some industries, like oil and gas or chemical. However, I think that we are on the right path.
We are doing a lot. One of the most innovative things is the online shop on the Endress+Hauser website, where each customer can purchase any device from our portfolio. Future engineers are growing with online shops like Amazon.
In your opinion, how could the life of an engineer be made easier or more organized? Any applications you think are missing that could be developed in the near future?
My answer for this is IIoT. Internet of Things is helping us in our routine. For instance, there are refrigerators that can purchase directly over the internet the products that it does not detect inside.
Our fridge communicates directly with the supermarket and keeps our kitchen full of food. Now, Endress+Hauser can predict when a device will need maintenance. With IIoT and Heartbeat technology, engineers will have all the devices “communicating” in the system and scheduling maintenance. Not only will the life of an engineer be more easily organized, but also unexpected issues will be avoided.
Moving ahead, what would you recommend to the next generation of engineers?
From my point of view, it is very important to have a highly technical background. This means choosing a good university and working hard. But, it is also important to take advantage of life.
Try to work abroad and learn as much as you can from international experience. Globalization has arrived, and acquiring knowledge from other cultures can be a game-changer.