Why Does Your Business Need IoT?
Ever thought we would be referring to #things as – Smart? People are smart because sometimes we tend to think & provide solutions that are out of the box. Today we expect the ‘things’ around us to give us Smart Solutions-what is making ‘things’ Smart?
Yes, we are discussing IoT, & the multitude of benefits it is offering to various sectors. What enterprises find difficult to realize is, IoT as a technology is meant to converge your IT with OT (Information technology +Operational technology). The digital wave has given enterprises an opportunity to adopt technologies like IoT to gain competitive advantage and serve their customers better. But IoT is not limited to only these functions. PwC predicts the overall market for IoT is expected to cross over 50 Billion connected devices with a revenue that exceeds $3 Trillion USD by 2020. Can this be possible if only a select few sectors implement IoT for certain functions? There is definitely more to the IoT story than businesses believe today.
Why Does Your Business Need IoT?
There are some key reasons why IoT is essential for enterprises and they hold common across sectors, whether Healthcare, Manufacturing, Service Industries, Retail etc;
Driving Customer Experience
Forrester predicts, for the Indian Manufacturing sector- IoT will move from the shop floor and become an essential part of B2B value propositions & pricing models. Providing proactive & predictive maintenance services would become a business model for many enterprises, to ensure better customer experience. For eg; Your refrigerator is about to break down as the maintenance is due, but you are unaware of it; you receive a phone call from the customer care “ Your service agent for the refrigerator is on his way. Can you confirm if you are available?” Consumers would be delighted to receive such proactive service calls, wouldn’t they? This won’t be possible without IoT. Sensors on the refrigerator keep transmitting data on the environment of the appliance and send alerts if there is a chance the appliance may breakdown.
IoT is breaking down barriers by serving as a digital thread between applications & humans this way, & helping businesses serve their customers better.
Driving Real-Time Insights
Real-time data – from people, processes, and devices through sensors is revolutionizing. This visibility into what is going on, right now, is game changing, & we are already seeing innovation across all of the core sectors, for eg; in retail,
Based on real-time insights of buyers retailers can stock products in inventory & on shelf increasing their profits through efficient stock & sales management. IoT plays a major role in connecting devices like smart cameras, systems, to work in collaboration. This is how businesses can take intelligent decisions starting from service, eventually bringing in new innovations & business models that meet your business goals.
Driving Business Maturity through Innovative Models
Performing analytics on data coming in from different systems like ERP, SAP, Salesforce etc, within the organization can open your eyes to new dimensions of business techniques. Taking an example of a connected smart office, where devices are integrated & sharing information, there is a huge pool of data collected by an organization. The company has managed to collect data on the number of hours spent on a printer, the number of pages wasted & number of times the printer ran dead. This information is not very useful to this organization, but definitely useful to the printer manufacturers, isn’t it? John Deere, a company who manufactures tractors for a better half of the century found a new business model based on the data they collected from their on-field equipment.
Details that never have been tracked before like power consumption, system collaboration, server time utilization, can be optimally & effectively enhanced to save cost by bringing IoT in the picture.
Driving Intelligent Surveillance
Isn’t every organization looking to protect their assets? How IoT can make this task easy is give you real-time insights and monitoring into what is happening at the shop-floor or ground level, sensors or wearable tech can protect assets (machines & humans) from incidents that may be life-threatening or damaging. These surveillance systems embedded with IoT & analytics at the edge can detect even the misplacement of a device or prevent a theft before it even takes place.
The Bigger Picture
What goes unnoticed by businesses today is how easily technology can be molded to suit your requirements. We need to stop looking at the vast possibilities IoT can bring to us through a keyhole, and widen our scope to see the future.
‘My business cannot use a technology as big as IoT’, is limiting organizations from exploring its applications. Any organization begins its digital journey by making data available on digital systems and eventually bringing siloed processes & functions to exchange information. Realizing data as an asset, and technologies like IoT the medium for simplifying & enabling organizations to capitalize this data, is important. Those who have realized this are the digital leaders of their sector, and the rest will soon follow.
So, after reading this blog, will building an IoT strategy become the next hot topic in your boardroom discussions?