Can the Internet of Things provide business value?

  • Posted on November 24, 2015

Internet of Things

This is a guest blog post written by Avanade alum, Dan O'Hara. 

Businesses are obsessed with data, and are gathering more and more of it by the second. In fact, every two days we create as much information as we did from the beginning of time until 2003. But data on its own, without context, is meaningless. It has to be relevant, accessible and actionable.

By accessible and actionable data, I mean we need to have systems and processes in place that make sense of data and give it to employees, allowing them to use their expertise to action it.

The Internet of Things can bring value to your business

We’re living in a very new world of advanced robotics and machine learning. Exciting technologies are there to be utilized, but we need to relate it to the people and values of the business.

We have to look at The Internet of Things (IoT) as an ecosystem; technology, data, process, insight, action and people all play a part in enabling a more efficient digital workplace.

What are the goals of your organization? Start from there and see where IoT can come in to help you achieve them. Explore the data you already have and work out how you can make it more accessible.

Our formula for successful IoT

What’s needed is a comprehensive vision that includes, but goes beyond, IoT. Our vision of the IoT ecosystem includes:

  • Operating technology (OT) – generates and manages production systems
  • Information technology (IT) – manages information systems. Provides capabilities such as machine learning and predictive analytics
  • Future technology (FT) – advances in robotics, wearables and video analytics

Innovative solutions can then be realized, creating true business value (BV). Avanade uses an equation to represent this: OT/IT+FT=BV.

How can I find the relevant data?

We’ve started a program of data hackathons that look at organizations’ data to determine where the business value can be found. An organization may be fixated on a specific dataset, but our team can act as a fresh pair of eyes; in some cases, we find that its focus is on the wrong data.

This works particularly well with larger organizations, where data can become siloed and useless. Using our expertise, assessment and analytics, we can mine for the accessible and actionable data we know will improve their digital workplace effectiveness.

Dan O'Hara

Good comment Doug.   I think a key change we work with our customers on is a change of mindset from a database to a data pipeline.  In traditional solutions we think of data storage, ownership and systems of record.  These are still valid constructs but in IoT you need to also think of data flowing continuously from sensors, machines and algorithms.   Some of these data pipelines you own (your CRM system) some you rent (your connected vehicles) and some you just access (local weather and market data).   All of them are continually flowing data and our job to help a customer to find what data is relevant for better decision making and increased business value.

December 8, 2015

Doug Goldberg

I could not agree more, Dan. I wonder if you wouldn't mind elaborating on how in an ecosystem a firm like Avanade addresses the changes that new update techniques in data mining and the utilization of valuable data sources alters the way in which people work. How does Avanade address these shifts with its customers to take full advantage?

November 24, 2015

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