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IoTfy Your Business

By Anil Kumar Gupta
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Internet of Things(IoT) – A new revolution that is going to be the core backbone of business in the years to come. Industry is getting ready to adopt this massive change that is likely to hit it sooner than later. As per a recent survey [1] 96% of the senior business leaders have plan to use IoT in next 3 years. Among the ones who have adopted – 94% already have started to realize their return on investment. IoT has potential to create additional 10-15 trillion$ economy. Virtually every vertical will have an impact due to this massive change in technology.

Inflection point in this technology adoption can be attributed to a few important factors. These are

– Revolution in Sensor technology: Availability of new sensors virtually able to sense every possible core attribute that is significant, miniaturization of sensors, and continuous dropping cost of sensors

– Revolution in Connectivity: Wireless connectivity has gone through five generations of revolution in about two and a half vcades. 4G networks offer very high data bandwidth and fully deployed in most of the geographies. 5G trials are already in advanced stage. Installation of production ready network may happen anytime in next 2-3 years. 5G network will offer multiple advantages – 10x higher bandwidth compared to 4G, Ultra low latency, better connection and network availability etc are some of the advantages that are likely to give significant boost to IoT adoption [2]

– Massive deployment of Cloud enabled services: Cloud enabled services have picked up massively in last decade or so. Cloud offers multiple advantages over the in-house, standalone data centers. Higher availability, Rapid scalability, Faster Service deployments, Multi-tenancy etc are some of them. Now, cloud platform and services are coming up in many flavors based on the specific need of the business. Massive services are being offered by the cloud platform players. All Key players – Amazon(AWS), Micorsoft( Azure), Google( Google Cloud) and a lot of others have started offering full stack services for rapid development on their cloud.

– Advancement in Machine Learning, Deep Learning and Artificial Intelligence: The real benefit of IoT is realized when things become smarter and smarter. They are able to learn by themselves, they are able to talk to each other, they are able to negotiate with each other, and able to run the applications best suited for maximized outcomes with minimal human interaction and minimal disruption. New advancement in technologies like Machine Learning, Deep Learning, Natural Language Processing and Artificial Intelligence open the path exactly in that direction. With these technologies, new usecases are getting created everyday and a lot of businesses are taking advantage of the intelligence being created.

IoTfying Your Business – What exactly it means

There are lot of manual intervention in day-to-day business processes. Each of these manual intervention has its own incremental cost involved with it. Labor cost of executing these processes, process waiting time loss cost – cost involved related to wait time for other dependent process for every manual process. Quality control cost – there are chances of error in manual execution and with every error caused, the cost for rectification of such error could be huge. Sometimes beyond monetary, resulting into business reputation or loss of business.

IoTfying is actually about identifying all potential possibilities of extreme automation, applying state of the art Industry best practices for automation which will result in significant improvements in revenue generation, cost efficiencies and predictable & improved quality. IoTfying will improve business to evolve new innovative business models, new ways to engage and serve customers and collaborating with suppliers and partners.

How to approach IoTfying your business

Locate relevant examples already implemented: Every industry sector is going through business and technology innovation cycle. Example case studies are already available in almost all verticals which have applied IoT technology in their business and have benefits to showcase. Be it Manufacturing, Services Industry, Travel Industry, Retail, Energy & Utilities, Infrastructure services management, Automotive industry or any other sector. We can find a lot of case studies which would be relevant to your business.

Identify your primary business drivers for the change: Business has to identify and articulate core objectives for implementing the change. For some it may be tapping additional market opportunity for revenue generation, for some it may be achieving cost efficiencies/productivity and eliminate waste, for some it could be better customer engagements, customer insights, for others identifying opportunity to up-sell/cross sell to the existing customers.

Articulate/Re-articulate long term vision: IoT is here to stay. The technology will offer potential to reap the benefits on continuous basis. New innovations will continue to hit the market. It is important to spend senior management time and articulate long term vision for the business. This long term vision will help in further steps like data collection, IT architecture, product development & evolution and selecting the basic tools and elements of the solution.

Conceptualizing the solution: Now it is time to get into solution element. The solution may be an evolving solution with few phases of implementation based on specific need. Solution would include things/objects/machineries to be monitored and controlled, essential data elements, hardware product concept identification, new user interfaces, new industry interfaces, platform architecture, cloud services specification, mobile application specification etc.

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