IoT stands for Internet of Thing and this report is an attempt to map the IoT capabilities to solve extensive business problems by making the decision makers empowered by providing some insightful business data point. In this report the possible IoT application strategy roadmap is designed for the company (Ovidiu Vermasen, 2012). The areas are deciphered by analyzing the success stories in the current scenarios and hence possible industries have been finalized. The expansion strategy must be agile as the industry is changing quickly and hence upgrades to solution will also be needed to be done quickly.
Theory of IoT:
Internet of Thing is a concept in which the data extraction mode is made live and hence data point sources are the things around us. The capabilities of analytics has been enhanced by inclusion of Clod Computing and high level analytics is not possible at a real time basis. What is important point here is that some very critical business decisions are not taken without substantial backing of data and that is where IoT as a concept is important and appreciated (Evans, 2010). Example, when a company is not sure amount the status of their logistics capabilities, the impact of IoT, where the sensors are talking with the system to provide the current state as – is of the system is very important for the company to push the things in the progressive direction. Also, enhancing the capabilities in almost every sector is possible, where there are tons of things and all carrying important data, like the concept of Beacons, where they can detect the Bluetooth around a store and send important updates on the mobile directly. All these are very strategically places concepts, which help the companies and the management to be more reliant on the actual data analysis and not just speculations or hypothesis.
IoT by nature is an amalgamation of three elements, which are Things – which are empowered by sensor devices to collect the data, Data – which is collected from those Sensors through some sensor reading devices and lastly, the Computing & Analytics – which is the art of reading that data, turning into a manageable and sorted form and then taking out the business insights from there (GSMA, 2014). This is the end to end analysis of IoT and it is the need of the hour, when it comes to making an informed and better business critical decisions in the business environment. The situation that business faces, demands a through and insightful analysis of data and logic and that is provided by IoT capabilities.
Today it has penetrated in almost every sphere and still a lot to conquer and analyze. The biggest success stories that are relevant for the business environment are discussed in the next section. These are few of the cases, which have shown the capabilities that are available for the business to redefine their horizon of processes and through that they have gained substantial insights and results.
Kraft Foods Cooler Mapping – Smart Retail:
Kraft is always a very tech – savvy company and they have unleashed the potential of Smart retail concept in which they are able to tap the inventory requirement till the end of the customer contact point and are able to forecast precisely how much is the availability needed at the retail store and how much is the current inventory status at the retail stores. The coolers and the refrigerator where the chocolates and other stuffs are kept are mapped to a centralized repository tool at the central warehouse through sensors, which are capable to see the inventory levels of the chocolate and other items (Hammond, 2013). Through this the Central Warehouse of Kraft Foods has a fair idea about how much is the amount they need to keep in the repository to ensure that there is no stock out situation at all.
The issues that were resolved by this innovation were the lean inventory operations which they were able to manage with lesser resources and made the system more proactive and predictive. This helped the Kraft Foods to attain a minimum inventory level and still serve the customers in the better manner. Secondly they were able to improve their CFR that is the Case Fill Rate in which they were to face a bare minimum Stock Out situation and hence the relationships with their retailers and warehouses also improved (Hayes, 2015). The customer order decoupling point was closest to the customers by this innovation and a total benefit of Multi Million Dollars was achieved by Kraft. They also experienced a rise in customer retention and that was because their product was available on the shelf in the needed quality and quantity all the time. Apart from inventory the coolers were also able to tap the aging, temperature and other important aspects of the items that are critical for the business in relation to the quality of the products. This was a first of its kind of innovation that has the potential of easily bringing systematic retailing in operation. They had clear visibility of everything and that also helped the operations people to make the production related choices with enough confidence and the sales people to make a better prediction of the forecasting and hence maintain a cordial environment in the overall market, critical for CPG companies (Gregory, 2014). Appendix 1 shows the capabilities that are offered by the Smart Retails in the real retail environment.
Until now the entire capability of the cars super computing system was linked towards enhancing the internal working and capabilities of the car. With the advent of the Connected Car concept, for the first time, the huge capability is brought to the outside world and hence some computing is done in order to enhance the outside view of the car (Kramer, 2012). The system is more focused towards car with internet access and how it can be connected to other cars around and hence some thorough analysis can be done based on the available data while the car is running around.
There can be loads of data points and systems that may be connected with the connected cars and hence the capabilities may be unleashed. Suppose the way towards a destination may be shared by another car which is going in the same direction and in this way a person in being empowered that he need not be depended on himself and his gadgets only all the time (PWC, 2015). The same concept when extended is laying the pavement for the concept of driver less cars, in which the external sensors and indicators are good enough to ensure that the cars moves in the forward direction.
The enhanced capabilities that are in coming in the concept of Connected Cars is the beacons and the Bluetooth. Through these the communications are further enhanced and developed and the data sharing is happening at such advanced level that was absolutely unimaginable about a decade back. Again such capabilities are possible only if the cloud computing backing is able to crunch the data and hence able to provide some strategic insights based on the advance analytics that can be run on the data (McKinsey, 2014). The data crunching is the future of the analysis and all the companies are moving from being opinion driven to bring data driven.
The last analysis that is gaining a lot of traction for connect cars in the concept of Parking help. In which the parking assistance can be given to the driver based on the information given by the external environment and hence that will help in space optimization and ensure that there are lesser accidents on the roads and on the parking lots. These are few of enhanced capabilities gained out of the connected car concept and hence an important case study meant for analysis. Appendix 2 shows the capabilities of a connected car.
Potent Scope of Expansion:
Manufacturing industry is a heavy asset intensive industry that has been doing the business in the traditional format for ages. They have always followed the opinion based Strategy and operation systems to adhere to in case of regular working. The data driven decision is not in the DNA of the system and they are not typically known to be using the enhanced system analytics and cloud computing capabilities (IDC, 2015). This is the gap that the consulting and technology companies must identify and hence it will ensure that a solid expansion strategy is made in place.
From selling perspective it is to be kept in mind that in the manufacturing set up the major cost is taken away by the maintenance department and that is usually not the focused action item for any of the department and this is where the selling proposition will make most sense. As per the reports, out of the total operating cost of a manufacturing installation, roughly 55% goes into mismanaged maintenance activities and hence it involves a whole lot of bucks and in some bigger CPG companies it goes till multimillion dollar levels.
Hence, if the IoT solution in the space of maintenance management in the Manufacturing Industry is offered in the market and the kind of capabilities it can showcase in the market, it is bound to an instant hit. There are many companies which are ready to shell out good amount of one time money to get away from the recurring maintenance costs. Appendix 3 shows the maintenance expenditure overheads faced by the companies, so a good solution around this area is always welcomed by the market as it is solving a real time need. If a system is able to talk with the assets and plan their maintenance in a cost effective manner then it is a direct saving opportunity for the company and hence it is something that is worth to be given to the industry and it is surely going to stay there for a good coming two decades (Sebastian, 2010). This is the first of the kind of offering in the market that will elevate the level of manufacturing capabilities.
Health care is the second most potent industry where the scope of IoT level expansion can be seen and that will surely going to give a heads up for a new analytics based health monitoring almost at a real time basis. It will reduce the dependency of doctor being closer to the patient and hence people who are unable to be come to good doctors can be served well. Apart from the medical needs, the regular health needs in which there is a need to monitor tons of action points related to the human body can also be analyzed. Appendix 4 shows the scope of IoT in health care in which a person can continue to do the regular course of the day and the regular data that is collected in from there and hence a thoroughly analyzed results are produced at the end of the day.
It is to be noted here that health care of most of the countries lies in total mess and in order to ensure that it gets into some ordered form, the data backup and data collection is the most important thing that will ensure that thing to happen. The data points are available throughout the body and the sensor reader may be a simple device like a smart phone. This can enhance the capabilities and ensure that accurate body related data is available to the person all the time. The amalgamation of sensors like those which can check the body concentration just by the sweat of a person can be used and in that way the person is always updated with the latest information about the body. The same information with extended IoT capabilities can also be shared with the doctors and based on that the doctor can also recommend some immediate solution to the person. In this manner the end to end capabilities related to health care can be mapped and hence it is established that all the data is needed to be first collected and then analyzed to give some thorough results (Niewolny, 2013). Keep in mind that important highlights are needed is that money will be flowing in the system for health care update soon and it is the right time to invest in health care related IoT solutions that will ensure that the company will remain the part of the wave necessary for generating money.
Advantages and Disadvantages of IoT Applications:
There are a lot applications that are possible in the IoT applications that the connected devices can give. The concept of Smart cities and Smart Retail is only possible due to these connected devices. Consider the case of Connected Cars, the following advantages may be accesses and similar kind of advantages may be extended for various other applications.
As an extended example it can be shown here is that, if the driver of the car has some capability that can offer help in case of an emergency then the same is easier to share in case of connected car. The information is readily being emitted by the system of the cars and the other car users can read the data and hence in case of any help the same information may be extended to the needy. This is mainly helpful in case of doctors or an army person driving any car and hence this information will be very helpful and handy for other users.
From traffic management point of view as well, connected car is an important concept, as various reader installed at traffic lights etc. will be capable to read the information about the car and that will carry many important information like speed of the car, most used ways, most type of cars that are on the road and the system can be extended to the level that even the pollution level contribution can also be assessed and mapped. This way it is much easier to control the traffic and hence the concerned department will have substantial data points to actually take some very important decisions at a solid foundation level and not just an opinion to keep.
Loss of privacy is the major concern of the people and that is something is the major deterring point related to IoT. People in the majority of the cases, will not be comfortable in sharing of data.
Compatibility is the second major drawback of the IoT devices that is leading to the concern of data collection and churning.
It is also a very complex system to implement and maintain and mainly because all the devices are mobile and hence the maintenance cost is also high.
The people knowing the capabilities in and out are very less right now and hence it is equally very difficult to train the required resources in the right capability.
This is a major concern when it comes to dealing with data that the legal obligation for keeping the data safe and clean lies with the process and system owners and hence it is required to be processed properly and there is a lot of legal liabilities linked with the data.
The data carries some really personal information about the person and hence the ethical liability that lies here is that the data should be shared inappropriately and hence the management needs to be purely ethical and data must be kept safely.
In the end it is to be mentioned that post the analysis of two most important and critical case studies related to IoT, it can be seen that data is going to be the future of all the organization and the IoT is the gap between the things and the internet. With the availability of world class sensors and equally good sensor readers, it is seen that gathering the data is not an issue. When it comes to storage of data, the cloud competencies and capabilities have made it really easy to save the data and also some immediate high end analytics can be run on it. This analytics is basically the system that will show the true worth and importance of data. As such data in raw form is less than useless. It has to be converted into some readable and understandable form and then the cloud computing analytics can be performed on it and hence it further gives the results that are necessary for generating the desired outcomes. These outcomes are strong data results that will help the companies to take some immediate and impactful decisions. In this manner it is needed that potent industries must be recognized and post that an equally strong solution is given in the market that will help the industries realize that the solution is there to solve their as – is problem and in that way there is a better chance of forming a relationship. Always be ensured that the final outcome is dependent only on the number of buyers ready to take the solution and hence there should be enough number of buyers in the market who are ready to invest and in good proportion. This way it is made empirical that final solution is there for the taking and will be a good offering.
Future Scope of Expansion – Recommendations:
The future scope can be within the scope of the solution or by widening the scope as well. Like in case of manufacturing industry the current focus is on the maintenance department. The further scope can be extended to other departments as well and that will enrich the offering even further and to a level that it will become a habit of the industry to maintain a dependency on the IoT capabilities that will run the show in making the entire set up to be data driven and there is no place for opinion whatsoever.
This is a very critical mode of enhancing the service offerings in other sections of industries like Retail, Banking and Utilities. These are the banks of data and the analysis drawn from these industries is also of supreme nature that will ensure that good and through insights are given to the companies to make them more data dependent and empowered. The idea is that it should turn into the psychology of the company to only depend on IoT capabilities when there is a need to drive any decision or thoughts. This way it is established that companies are more enriched and empowered and in this manner they are better and more controlled.
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