The promised revolution of “50 billion IOT devices by 2020” hasn’t happened. Instead there are 9 billion, many of which are not doing much. For every Next or Ring there are hundreds of products like connected washing machines or connected refrigerators yet to prove their value. In Enterprises, there is an even larger rift between potential and realized value. Enterprise IT boneyards are filling up with IOT POCs that didn’t deliver the value they promised.
The primary cause of failure is the choice of business use case. The human aspect of digitization through IOT is arguably the next biggest factor, but weak product architecture, ecosystem integration, and a lack of standards for data interoperability each contribute to the downward spiral that befell these failed POCs.
Starting at the Beginning: Bringing IOT out of the Shadows
Analyzing data is the foundation of every IOT project. The ROI for understanding the state of your infrastructure comes from doing more with less. Preventative maintenance and closed loop visibility can improve the health of your company and make positive outcomes more consistent – but they are not the end goals for most businesses.
Monitoring devices isn’t enough anymore. Throughout history, real value comes from reducing human effort. Collecting and analyzing information is only a small part of what organizations do. To realize IOT’s transformative potential, business process automation ought be the desired outcome, not an afterthought.
Architecting Solutions, not Connections
Very often products focus on connecting devices and transporting data upstream with little understanding or context of how the data will be used. This results in raw data that is not usable as is. Focusing on the business context for IOT data makes the project worth the effort.
Don’t Get Stuck in a Silo
Silios are everywhere in Enterprise. Many of them will provide access to data, but not focus on how the data is used, making integration efforts long and painful. Providing APIs and data formats to make IOT solutions a part of the larger ecosystem in customer environments can provide the type of ROI first envisioned. Keep in mind that silios don’t make themselves, people do. Forming a good relationship with organizational “gatekeepers” is essential, which leads to the final topic.
Focus on Human Systems more than IT Systems
IOT digitizes business processes which have been in place for years if not decades. Underestimating the effort needed to translate manual business processes to digital processes, especially in regulated industries, will fail to support the requirements and preferences of Users based on their training and SOPs. Focusing on change management needs will help IOT projects escape POC Purgatory. Keeping this Human element at the forefront of the Solution will not only help execute the project in a timely manner but also ensure success after going into production.
Vijji is an accomplished entrepreneur and executive, passionate about using technology to make a difference. Vijji brings her technical and management skills to the role of CIO & Head of Engineering to build a scalable technology organization and innovation culture to enable rapid growth of Phizzle.
Vijji was the Founder, CEO & CTO of CareerWaze a Future of Work startup. CareerWaze is an AI driven Career and Learning advisor helping users acquire in-demand skills. Vijji was also the Founder & CEO of BPA Technologies a VC funded Technology Services startup focused on Content Management Solutions for Fortune 500 Companies. BPA was acquired by a Moody’s group company ICRA in 2012.
Prior to this she held technology leadership positions and architected and built enterprise solutions in Content Management and Telecommunications domains. Vijji has a Bachelor’s in Computer science, Mathematics & Physics and a Master of Computer Applications from NIT Warangal.