Adapted from interview, Iain Hazlewood/Dave Trail, IPC-APEX 2022

Arch Systems has become a leader in the manufacturing software space, innovating how their clients utilize data to make decisions. The company is spearheading how manufacturers collect, interact, and use data from their operations through leading-edge processes never before seen in the industry.

As Arch Systems grows, we value staying connected and contributing to the industry. One way we do so is to participate in the IPC APEX EXPO, a key gathering for electronics manufacturers. In 2021, Arch CTO Tim Burke presented Strategic Uses of Machine Data to the IPC APEX EXPO. We returned in 2022 with an in-person booth to be a part of the event.

During the expo, Dave Trail, Arch System’s Vice President of Sales, discussed with Iain Hazlewood the role of software and data for the industry’s future. Dave’s career has placed him at the intersection of software and manufacturing, allowing him to gain valuable insights and understanding of where the manufacturing industry is headed and how Arch is leading the way.

Changing the game

Dave highlighted Arch’s unique position as a company. “We’re the only company that takes this approach to (data), and the reason why we’re the first company to do that is honestly, it’s hard.”

Arch works with manufacturers to collect all machine data from their factory processes instead of simply collecting summations. This means collecting granular data even from the processes an individual machine is conducting on the factory floor. This data is then sent to the cloud and sorted instantaneously through advanced algorithms and machine learning. The data becomes more than the sum of the parts; Arch’s customers gain the ability to find new efficiencies, improve processes, and solve problems much more quickly than before. This new relationship to their data saves them time and money.

Built-in security

Arch’s envelope-pushing approach to data naturally brings with it questions about security. Even a few years ago, artificial intelligence and machine learning were only buzzwords, promising a wave of future technology that would revolutionize the industry. Now that these technologies are here, they are pushing massive changes in how organizations relate to data and build infrastructure around it. Integrating these technologies can worry some manufacturers who hold concerns about the safety of their data, IP, and more. Especially when these new technologies feel so new.

Dave acknowledges security is top of mind for everyone. However, Arch has risen to the challenge by implementing their own security and data management using modern cloud methods built upon the already strong practices of partners like AWS. Security is a major concern for Arch when it comes to working with customers. This commitment to safeguarding data has allowed Arch to offer services that have only been dreamed about before.

Custom solutions

The key to Arch’s ROI is not simply collecting vast amounts of data but also making it highly contextual and therefore actionable. The summation needed to track global KPIs are important, and Arch feeds those, but clients get even more; granular, real-time data such as the specific heads on the pick-and-place machine that are causing failures or the amount of time needed between maintenance cycles. Arch collects that detailed information across machines from every vendor. The data Arch collects is stored in its native format, which means it does not need to be changed before being processed by their algorithms.

This answers a need that the industry has been talking about for years. Some manufacturers have tried to achieve these results in-house with custom software initiatives. They found it too costly. Arch sets up quickly and remotely with little hassle, all while helping manufacturers find the custom solutions they were looking to build independently at a higher cost.

Arch System’s wellspring of experience

Near the end of the conversation, Dave made it a point to underscore how knowledgeable and connected Arch is to tech. Based in Palo Alto, the company has hired talent from Silicon Valley who carry vast experience and successful records. Many of the people working at Arch are industry professionals who understand the needs they are trying to meet in the manufacturing industry.

The full interview with Iain and Dave can be seen here.