One of the most quoted terms in today’s digital world is Internet of Things or IoT as is popularly called in IT parlance. A very simple and direct definition of IoT is interconnecting different capable devices via the internet by giving them an IP address to facilitate the communication between these devices. There can be many benefits of Internet of Things for the general population as well as businesses.
Benefits of IoT
For example, your IoT-enabled refrigerator can digitally communicate with your Smartphone via the internet to tell it that you are running short of milk and you don’t have enough of it to prepare the tea for the next morning. In the context of business, the smart freezer can communicate with Smartphone to communicate that the freezer there is not enough butter prepare the required quantity of doughnuts for the next day! Hence, the bakery can buy required amount of butter required for smooth production operations the next day! Confessed, it is the oversimplified example of how IoT can help the businesses. There are a number of more complex ways in which the IoT can enhance the different aspects of business like cost reduction, increased profitability, better productivity and judicious use of resources.
Let us know about some major industries that can be benefitted by IoT. In this article, we would focus on discussing the role of IoT in the core business operations. Another way in which IoT can help the businesses is by enhancing their marketing strategy. That part majorly deals with the customer data and allowing or encouraging them to interact more thoroughly while responding to the business communication. However, we would save that part for future. In this article, we will focus on real life examples of how can IoT enhance the core business operations.
Quicker manufacturing processes
More than 80% of manufacturing companies who have incorporated IoT in their daily operations report that it has “significantly increased their efficiency”. Real-time promptness and least latency play an important role in enhancing the efficiency of manufacturing companies and with the use of IoT, a number of interruptions have been eliminated in the physical manufacturing process that has considerably fasten the pace of the process while utilizing the human and technical resources to their fullest.
Better control of Inventory
Every year a large number of companies experience great losses just because of the shortage of inventory. It creates an imbalance in demand and supply. The after-effects range from temporary losses to long term effects like the steady shifting of consumers’ loyalty or in some cases losing a portion of the business to competitors. With the use of IoT, the real-time monitoring will promptly alarm the business when an inventory goes below the prescribed level. It will help the business to refill the inventory before it starts affecting the sales. It will help the business to avoid sales drops and eliminates the possibility urgent procurement of goods at higher costs levied by sources or suppliers during such instances. Hence a business can enjoy the dual benefit of case reduction and increases sales revenue.
Eliminating headcounts without compromising on operations
One of the significant costs is attached to the manpower. The more headcounts come with more cost liabilities in the form of salaries, resources allocations and other direct/indirect expenses associated with manpower. However, with IoT, a number of things are automated like monitoring, adjustment, and optimization of machine functionality. It helps the companies to automate a large part of operations and thus eliminating the need for additional employees.
Eliminating travel and associated costs
A number of businesses spend a huge amount of cost on travel expenses of their key employees to tackle technical issues. For example, a data center may have to call its expert engineer from the US to tackle a rare technical issue in its Indian branch. It involves significant travel expenses not to mention other associated expenses like lodging, food and any type of extra remuneration! However, thanks to its Real-time data monitoring and manipulation, the IoT makes it possible to tackle a number of issues through remote control or sensor. IoT in this example could allow the US-based expert in tackling the issues without requiring traveling to India.
The hastened operational monitoring of any business the time taken to report any issue plays a vital role in determining the efficiency of mentoring. Hence just analysis is not enough. It is the predictive analysis and proactive identification of shifting trends that is needed for a real benefit. Due to their seamless connectivity, coordination and advanced nature the IoT facilitates predictive analytics and can also offer advanced diagnostics at the right time, before the company’s operations are affected. Depending upon the insights and analytics the company can take proactive measures like arranging in-house staff training, go for technical overhauling or order more machinery!