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We’ve all seen the Cisco statistics back in 2017, which stated that up to 75% of IoT projects fail. Like any big IT or organisation-wide project, planning and getting the whole enterprise on board from the very beginning is key to a successful implementation. Although IoT aims to solve numerous business problems and even drive new and improved business models, it isn’t just another trend that you can quickly incorporate and hope it runs smoothly.
If you follow the steps in this blog post, you’re already giving your enterprise a great advantage because you’ll know how to develop an IoT strategy that will work successfully and bring great benefits to the organisation.
Before we take a look at how to create a successful IoT strategy, it’s important to know what the project failure red flags are so you can succinctly sidestep any chances of impending doom!
1. Failure to complete a business case for your IoT project: find a clear why for the IoT project that ties to bottom-line business, rather than trying to build one for the sake of IoT being on-topic and necessary in your industry.
2. Lack of talented staff: If your staff are not well-versed with the business objectives or don’t have deep technical, appropriate data backgrounds, you’ll need to consider bringing in new talent and upskilling current staff.
3. Inability to make the necessary business decisions: This somewhat relates to the previous point about knowledgeable talent. The whole point of IoT is to make new decisions based on the structured and unstructured data that’s constantly flowing through the system. If you’re not putting that data to use, or it’s being misinterpreted, then the system will go to waste.
To successfully develop an IoT strategy that will set you apart from competitors and give your organisation the confidence to drive new business decisions, follow these steps.
Like any other big project undertaking in the organisation, holding a meeting between all stakeholders at the beginning of the project to outline how the business is moving forward, and how IoT can accelerate that is imperative. Rather than making a plan around how IoT will transform the company from the top down, see first of all what the current goals are and how IoT can accelerate the processes to reach those goals. Collaboration between IT and people – culture, mindsets and the environment are factors that must be considered to drive the adoption of this new platform.
Assess current inventory to see if they can feed data from sensors and devices to relay asset information. This is an essential part of IoT system integration because the tools and assets that send the data to the cloud to be analysed need to align with the business goals. There’s no point connecting assets that don’t affect the key business decisions (at least in the beginning, overtime as the system develops you can add more connected assets to provide deeper levels of information).
In order for these devices and sensors to send information to operations and enable better decision making, edge computing and gateways need to be implemented to allow for this quick communication and real-time analytics. Edge computing is a type of network architecture that allows for faster processing of data close to where the devices are located, in order to reduce bandwidth and increase the response times.
These devices have to constantly communicate and connect with one another. Protocols and communication mechanisms need to be developed to allow devices to interact with the legacy assets, to form raw datasets generated by the assets and tools, how the devices send data and communicate with the edge, and the protocols that are necessary between devices and the gateway (the secure software programme or physical device that acts as the connection point between the cloud and controllers).
To secure the system carefully, datasets must be encrypted and compressed before sending off to the cloud for processing. Because there is so much data being generated in real-time, governance models must be developed and implemented to restrict access to certain devices, and to prevent hacking from external systems. Organisational policies will define who has control over what, and if something does go wrong who or what is responsible. With GDPR and Federal policies in place and being enforced, security must be a core component of all IoT strategies.
Gathering and collating the data is one aspect of an IoT strategy, but the system fails when the data either doesn’t inform business decisions, or doesn’t answer the necessary questions that will move the organisation forward. The data needs to be stored in a safe place and be easily accessible. But when mapping out what form that data will be stored in, it’s important that you have dashboards that relay the metrics and KPIs to fix and monitor business problems. Developing coherent machine learning algorithms and analytics is what will truly differentiate your IoT from others, as you make decisions based on this valuable information.
With the Davra IIoT Platform, less than 5% of IoT projects fail because we chat with our customers about their current business developments and how they want to improve the organisation. IoT is never looked upon as a separate entity, but rather how it can propel the organisation forward with key, mapped out insights. If you would like to take your enterprise to the next level with an IIoT platform, please book a meeting with us today.
Brian McGlynn, Davra, COO