Industrial Internet of Things (IoT)

How to Handle the Transformative Effects of IoT Within Business

Internet of Things

Technology innovator and entrepreneur, Jay Samit once said that to be successful, innovation should not just be about value creation, but value capture. If value capture is a mark of success within technology, then the Internet of Things (IoT) carries the potential to revolutionize the world, starting with business and industry. IoT is becoming a crucial component of the digital transformation occurring within most organizations.

(IoT) is often defined as the ever-growing network of physical objects that feature an IP address for Internet connectivity. The key factor, however, that makes this technology game-changing is the communication that occurs between IoT devices and other Internet-enabled devices and systems.

The Industrial IoT, a more recent phenomenon within IoT, is being seen as a potential game-changer in its ability to improve operational efficiency. IIoT incorporates machine learning and big data technology to improve the actionable data emanating from the sensors. Then through the application of machine-to-machine (M2M) communication and automation technologies, which have existed in industrial settings for years, IIoT is able to capture and communicate data more consistently and accurately than the human equivalent.

Although this type of IoT stems from its birth in manufacturing, the approach and infrastructure of IIoT can enable companies to pick up on inefficiencies and problems in various other sectors in the future, eventually helping those companies save time and money, while augmenting their business intelligence efforts.

Currently, in manufacturing specifically, IIoT is starting to show great potential for quality control, as well as the use of sustainable, green practices. IIoT is also starting to show potential in supply chain traceability and overall supply chain efficiency.

Consulting juggernaut, Accenture Technology, predicts that in the future, successful companies will use the Industrial Internet of Things to capture new growth through three approaches:

  • Boost revenues by increasing production
  • Create new hybrid business models
  • Exploit intelligent technologies to fuel innovation, and transform the current landscape of the workforce.

However powerful IIoT is, the challenges of operating a business in this environment remain overwhelming. Despite the benefits of IoT, this technology has the potential to expand IT complexity, as well as the threat landscape, for most organizations.

In many ways, IoT is a double-edged sword. On one hand, companies get digital disruption innovation and growth. But on the other hand, business and operational disruptions increase in magnitude as well. This double-edge disruption makes it more important for companies to achieve service assurance, which relies on pinpointing the root cause of performance degradations anywhere along the service delivery path and resolving true threats quicker.

IoT issues and a potential lack for service assurance can cause the ability for companies to find success within digital transformation far more elusive. According to a recent study on Digital Transformation:

  • As many as 27 percent of senior executives rate digital transformation as now being “a matter of survival,” yet 33 percent of organizations see digital transformation as a huge challenge.
  • The majority (87 percent) of companies think that digital transformation is a competitive opportunity but only 48 percent say they feel highly proficient with digital transformation marketing.
  • 51 percent of senior executives believe it’s critical to implement digital transformation in the next 12 months and over half cite a lack of familiarity with technology to be a barrier to digital transformation.

At the core of the challenges facing the Digital Transformation of an organization is IT systems and business intelligence, which according to the survey was listed as the third largest obstacle to achieving a state of Digital Transformation. The heart of this issue is how can a company truly understand and see all the moving parts of the enterprise in one understandable snapshot, with context and actionable intelligence?

Essentially, in many ways, won’t the rise of IoT or IIoT simply cause most organizations to freeze and miss out on opportunities?

This paralysis is already occurring in business. The S&P 500 has had a 50 percent churn rate since the beginning of this century. In 1999 GE and Coke-a-Cola were at the top of the S&P 500. Now it is Apple Computing and Google. Uber, which owns no cars and predominantly exists in the cloud, has a market cap that is larger than GM or Ford.

Conducting Data in the Enterprise

In many ways, running a successful business is being a train conductor, except that instead of routing and moving trains, you're routing and moving data. The information your organization needs to process, analyze and take action on doesn’t just come out of a financial database. Instead the data comes from a myriad of various sources, ERP, CRM, social and operational data, IoT, cloud, BYOD and so forth.

NETSCOUT keeps the trains running, and provides insights on the trains, which are fast and which are slow, and tells you about capacity so you can add more trains. Regardless of architecture or platform NETSCOUT provides your organization with a complete picture of the entire environment.

Finally, social data correlated with NETSCOUT’s ASI technology, which offers an effective force multiplier of visibility into the complex corporate IT environment, enables better control of business outcomes. With NETSCOUT, organizations get clear insights into service performance issues in order to quickly resolve them before they become user and customer problems. This functionality is part of NETSCOUT’s service assurance platform, which in combination with NETSCOUT’s threat management solutions can accelerate successful digital transformation.

There’s little doubt that the Internet of Things is having a major impact on business. And just like any company that blissfully ignored the Internet at the turn of the century, the ones that dismiss IoT run the risk of getting left behind. But by undergoing the business transformation that empowers organizations to have a holistic view of all their technologies and data points, organizations have a high chance of success with whatever comes at them in today’s digital world.

Read more: Blockchain and the Impact on Digital Transformation