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We’ve discussed the strategic value of the Internet of Things (IoT) for some time, covering both business productivity improvements and organisational strategies. We are also very proud of our Advanced IoT specialism from Cisco.
Much of our analysis has been around the potential benefits from new IoT business models. This raises an interesting point – what exactly does the IoT mean for everyday tasks?
In the last 18 months, the majority of IT professionals will likely have read how the IoT can improve everyone’s working lives, but may still feel it is an intangible concept. How will this change? The consumer sector offers some insight – for example, a recent survey cited housekeeping (56%), garden maintenance (34%) and home utility management (27%) as some of the top tasks people would like to automate.
Like in the workplace, each of these tasks are time consuming, repetitive and mundane, but necessary to maintain a household. Streamlining how we spend our time is one of the main benefits from IoT technologies.
From a business perspective, organisations have already started to use IoT solutions to automate everyday activities, bolster monitoring capabilities and drive operational efficiency. Much like a house, businesses and their IT departments require routine support, maintenance and management to ensure those using applications (i.e. the end-user) can perform their roles efficiently.
Sensors can be deployed on an array of devices to deliver 24/7 insight to those responsible for the uptime of equipment. This information can then be utilised across the business for internal business planning, improving customer service and enabling employees to work more flexibly.
A recent article from Tech Republic discussed how data is enhancing departmental management. This includes:
- Machine and Infrastructure Maintenance – sensors can detect the condition of equipment and alert engineers to prevent infrastructure failure and downtime.
- Logistics and Tracking – assets being shipped and the vehicles transporting them can be tracked from the warehouse to their final destination, providing visibility across the global supply chain.
- Network Monitoring – real-time network monitoring can improve the quality of service by rerouting network traffic at certain choke points.
Accenture estimates that companies could see an increase in productivity of nearly 30% and a reduction in the cost of maintenance of 30% through IoT automation. The efficiency these solutions can bring to workflows and business processes makes the IoT delivery model a powerful tool for streamlining the maintenance, monitoring and management of technical assets and in the long-term, allow companies to focus on their business objectives.