Superior Controls Bob Patrick

Blog post by VP of Engineering Robert Patrick

As new employees, engineers are required to complete a number of training modules (29 to be exact) which cover topics ranging from office procedures to technical topics such as Good Documentation Practice (GDP) and Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP).

After completing the required modules, each engineer is assigned a training project for a small batching system.  This is a great opportunity for individuals to execute a project from beginning to end, learn how we execute projects, and become familiar with our software modules and documentation templates.

The steps involved with the training project include:

  • Review and understand the scope
  • Identify the I/O for the system based on the supplied P&ID
  • Complete an electrical design for the control cabinet
  • Develop the design documents for the system
  • Program the PLC and Operator Interface
  • Test the system

Hands-on training for Software Factory Acceptance Test (SFAT) and Hardware Factory Acceptance Test (HFAT) execution was recently added to our training curriculum.  Because many of our projects are for customers in the biotech industry, it is required that our engineers are trained and comfortable with the execution of rigorous test protocols.  Trainees have the opportunity to simulate a system and use proper Good Documentation Practice (GDP) outside of an official project.  There are a number of tests in the curriculum which will not meet the expected result and will require the trainee to identify and document the incident properly.  Test protocol reports are reviewed with a senior engineer to verify proper execution and documentation.

We first implemented the employee training project in the spring of 2015.  The feedback from new employees who have completed the course has been extremely positive.  It has been a great tool for onboarding both junior and senior engineers.