"Cisco supports multiple deployment models, including the cloud, on-premise, and various hybrids in between; the company works across enterprise protocols, including public switched telephone network (PSTN)," said Frost & Sullivan Sr. Industry Analyst Muthuraman Ramasamy. "Cisco also leads the way in developing platform-agnostic solutions to comprehensively support the bring-your-own-device (BYOD) trend."By having each asset and piece of equipment in a plant internally connected and capable of sending information to a main enterprise system, Cisco can provide customers single-plant views that have red-green key performance indices (KPIs), detailing processes at each sublevel. Cohesively integrating various facets of an organization and making data available to the right actors allows Cisco to not only enhance optimization and efficiency, but also de-silo the organization's hierarchy. Meanwhile, Cisco has also combined Rockwell Automation's leading automation offering with its networking infrastructure to foster a deep integration that offers exponentially higher benefits to customers. This strategic collaboration enables Cisco to deliver services, including network assessment, management, auditing, and architecture services. Apart from this partnership, Cisco's collaboration with intelligence and analytics partner MicroStrategy, a leader in its domain, enables customers to derive intelligent, informed and integrated business insights from the multitude of data generated and transferred. "The convergence of these best-in-class technologies through partnerships is generating never-before-seen value for manufacturing customers through seamlessly connected and converged environments, driving higher returns and profits," noted Ramasamy. "As an integrated solution provider, Cisco leads the market in terms of the value customers derive from its deployments, and this is evident from the return on investment tools provided to customers before and during deployments." Each year, Frost & Sullivan presents this award to the company that has demonstrated excellence in implementing strategies that proactively create value for its customers with a focus on improving the return on the investment that customers make in its services or products. The award recognizes the company's inordinate focus on enhancing the value that its customers receive, beyond simply good customer service. This leads to improved customer retention and, ultimately, to client base expansion.