Posted by Indusa Admin on March 8, 2016 8:16 am
There has been a lot of buzz around wearables and IoT. As more and more connected devices inundate the market, there is a paradigm shift in the way people, processes, data, and things interact with each other. Billions of intelligent devices are connected via Wi-Fi, cellular, barcode scanners, and other network devices. Today, we are surrounded by a web of not just smartphones and tablets but a plethora of other smart devices such as alarms, fitness trackers, thermostats, traffic systems, light bulbs, and vacuum cleaners – IoT is truly transforming how we live our lives. In fact, Gartner predicts that the total economic value add for the Internet of Things will be $1.9 trillion dollars in 2020.
What IoT Means for Businesses
Innovations in IoT have enabled people around the world to enjoy a gamut of benefits by using smart devices and having connected homes. So this leaves us to ask, what about IoT in the workplace? How can enterprises make the most of this emerging technology to fuel their growth? In the quest of empowering employees to be more informed, collaborative and connected, IoT services are seeping into the workplace by offering a combination of mobile phones, wearables, and many other connected devices. Transforming business operations by coupling people and things is what the future holds. By bringing together people, process, data, and things, IoT can completely reinvent how you deliver value to employees and customers.
IoT in the Enterprise
IoT’s explosion into the workplace is helping employees do their jobs better and can help your business improve operational excellence. And it’s not just about controlling office temperature, or turning the coffee machine on with a smart device. According to analysts, researchers, and IT leaders, businesses in a wide range of markets are piloting and deploying IoT in targeted ways. Some of these include:
- Newly constructed offices and buildings are equipped with connected energy management solutions that function according to the number of people in a room at a given time, making energy consumption efficient.
- Machines in factories have sensors that send alarms to smart devices as soon as there’s a problem, enabling workers to take care of the situation in time and prevent mishaps.
- Supply chain managers use GPS tags to capture and send real-time data to their smart devices that assist them with efficiently managing inventory and supply operations.
- Field workers use smart helmets to connect with experts in offices, who can view their work remotely and communicate specific instructions; mine workers don smart caps that detect risky burrowing and enable them to plan a workaround.
- Data center surveillance systems are upgraded with smart doorbells, connected locks and camera systems that inform IT managers instantly as soon as an intrusion is detected.
- Healthcare practitioners use smart eyewear for quick access to patients’ medical records. Smart watches assist them to remotely monitor vital signs like heart rate, blood pressure, and body temperature and take corrective actions.
- Wearable technology in the form of NFCs and augmented reality empowers retailers to capture browsing and buying patterns of users, and offer products and offers that meet specific needs, enhancing the overall shopping experience.
- Beacon technology offers great possibilities for connectivity and interactivity between mobile and existing hardware devices, and is considered to be the key component of the Internet of Things (IoT). Retailers are making use of beacon technology to target potential customers at the most appropriate moment by sending interactive and personalized messages to their mobile devices. Shoppers can now receive product related information as soon as they enter a retail store and pay for products without having to queue up at the payment counter.
Preparing for the Transition
How do you command, control, and deliver the next level of activity in an IoT world effectively? What do you do with all that data being generated? How do you detect signal from the noise? How do you make real-time decisions and power those real-time decisions? A shift in the workplace culture is essential to embrace the IoT wave. And with so much automation and such large volumes of data being generated, there’s a need for centralized control. As businesses start to confront how and where all the data travels, security is going to be the new frontier for IT departments across markets. Careful planning, consideration, and efforts on these aspects is vital to make the most of IoT in the workplace.
The Future Lies in Empowering People
IoT has gained popularity on the factory floor and in the field and is now beginning to empower the corporate office set up. Wearables and IoT won’t just empower things, but also people, in better managing their work life. Employees are beginning to show inclination towards integrating smart devices into their work lives, beyond their tablets, smartphones, and smartwatches. Embracing the IoT trend at the workplace is about discovering efficient ways to improve, enrich, and amplify business processes. By capturing critical data that is the crux for efficient decision making, IoT can help augment business operations. This in turn means leveraging other emerging technologies like cloud, big data, and analytics to deliver real-time business insights and unearth the true potential of IoT.
About the Author – Neha Kumar
Neha Kumar is a digital media evangelist and marketing professional. She overlooks Indusa’s content management, social media, online events, email marketing, blogs, digital campaigns, lead generation and inside sales activities on a broader scale.
Contibuting Author: Malavika Nityanandam