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The Internet of Things (IoT) continues to be one of the most significant trends in technology expected to alter business and consumer practices.
As we previously explained, there are many potential advantages from adopting IoT business models, especially for the manufacturing industry. A recent survey revealed that 55% of manufacturers viewed cost savings from greater operational efficiencies as the primary business benefit of adopting IoT technologies.
Connected solutions and machinery can provide managers with precise data throughout the manufacturing process. This can be analysed to determine inefficiencies in the supply chain, accelerate activities and improve time-to-market.
Expectedly, those surveyed saw productivity (20%), insight and decision making (15%), and machine and equipment utilisation (15%) as the three most likely outcomes an IoT strategy can deliver. For example, equipment can be monitored and repaired before problems arise; data collected can offer valuable insight to make more informed decisions; and, in improving operational planning, the IoT increases business productivity.
IoT Adoption – How Should a Business Prepare?
Despite these benefits, only 22% of businesses thought they were fully equipped to deliver on their IoT plans; the remaining respondents had devices and sensors in place to capture data, but were not currently utilising their data with business applications or analytics tools.
The common understanding of the IoT is connected devices communicating information through sensors, but this is only one side of the concept. Analytics software that can translate masses of corporate data into useful information turns the IoT into a really powerful business tool.
This business intelligence acquired from the IoT is the likely reason why McKinsey research estimates its potential value at $11.1 trillion per year in 2025, with one of its researchers saying businesses will be unlikely to remain competitive if they do not invest in the IoT in the next 10 years.
Most businesses look for expertise to help utilise the IoT. Fifty per cent of businesses said they would look to systems integrators for guidance when deploying and designing an IoT strategy. The IoT can feel daunting, but integrators can advise which aspects of the IoT are most useful to the business and what tools are available to help achieve business objectives.
The IoT is a valuable business tool and will become even more so as new business software and tools are developed. Combined with analytics tools, the insight the IoT offers into business processes will improve business practices across the organisation.
To learn more about the business benefits of the Internet of Things, read our recent blog here.