The Company  

Amtrol-Alfa | Worthington Industries is a leading manufacturer of returnable pressure tanks in welded steel for LPG, Refrigerant, and Technical Gas industries. The company was founded in 1962 in Guimarães, north of Portugal, under the name Petroleo Mecânica Alfa. In 2017, Amtrol was acquired by Worthington Industries, the leading LPG cylinder manufacturer and steel processor in North America.  

Today, it manufactures over 110 million LPG cylinders, with a production capacity of 25,000 cylinders per day. The company also manufactures disposable tanks for helium and foam.  

 

The Challenge

In this type of manufacturing industry, construction standards and regulations like ISO 9001 increasingly require evidence of document control and document management. Amtrol-Alfa was looking for a solution that would guarantee legal compliance and meet the requirements of ISO 9001.  

Additionally, they wanted a tool that would help their teams organise and categorise drawings and documents, allowing them to be easily searched and identified later.  

To address these needs, they needed a software that offered the ability to:  

  • Control different documents (AutoCAD, SolidWorks, Word, Illustrator, PDF)
  • Adapt the software to their needs
  • Flexibly create new folders, change features, etc.

That’s when they turned to Accruent.

 

The Solution  

After searching for a solution that would help them maintain regulatory compliance and manage drawings, Amtrol-Alfa first turned to a solution from Cyco Software called TeamWork. However, they soon found that Meridian was a more flexible, feature-rich, and powerful EDMS. Additionally, Meridian integrated more seamlessly with their main drawing tool, AutoCAD, which had shifted into SolidWorks. As a result, they decided to migrate into Meridian in 2005 and integrate it with SolidWorks.  

For the past 19 years, they have been a loyal customer, using Meridian to:  

  • Access previous revisions of critical documents
  • Search facilities
  • Use pre-defined searches
  • Present reliable information, and more.

Of Meridian’s capabilities, Susana Lopes, Product Engineering Manager, explains, “I [also] recommended using this software because of the possibility of integrating it with other software, and the reliability and consistency of the information [in Meridian].”  

Advanced Document Control and Compliance  

Meridian has fully met the organisation’s needs when it comes to document control and compliance. Today, Meridian not only manages drawings but plays an integral role in the company’s operations. More specifically, Amtrol-Alfa stores all its core documentation in Meridian, including:  

  • Regulatory compliance documentation
  • Commercial and procurement documentation
  • Engineering documentation

And they have had great results. As Lopes explains, “With this solution in place, searching, controlling document/drawing versions, and centralising documents has become faster and more efficient [...]. In the context of auditing, the tool has proved particularly useful in researching and highlighting the questions posed by the auditor. [Overall], we [have been] able to maintain procedures that helped us demonstrate compliance with legal and regulatory auditing compliance.”  

Additionally, the ability to centralise documentation has significantly improved performance, allowing the team to quickly access current and previous versions of important documentation.  

Amtrol-Alfa is now planning to expand the use of Meridian into other departments.