This week Vodacom Business has been diving into its IoT Barometer 2019 report, looking at some of the elements of the technology platform that adopters have been implementing of late.

For those wanting to develop their own Internet of Things (IoT) strategy the telecoms firm has some insight too. This as the more sophisticated your use of IoT, the more benefits you stand to gain, the company has found.

With that in mind, here are some aspects to look at when developing your own IoT strategy, according to Vodacom Business.

Treat it right

The first thing that the company says is to treat IoT as a critical part of the digital strategy.

“Digital strategy is increasingly key to business objectives. Today, how well a company can leverage the latest technologies is playing a growing role in its market position,” explains Vodacom Business in its report.

In order to effectively create and implement said digital strategy, IoT needs to play a pivotal role. In fact 72 percent of adopters say digital transformation is impossible without IoT.

If you were still on the fence regarding IoT’s impact, even in these early stages, the 2019 Barometer’s findings show that 55 percent of adopters have seen IoT disrupt their industry, with 44 percent of the organisations still considering IoT agreeing with that sentiment.

“IoT is enabling improvements to businesses of all shapes and sizes on a day-to-day basis,” says Vodacom Business.

Adding that, “83 percent of adopters say IoT is an essential part of the digital workplace.”

Don’t isolate it

For the next aspect of IoT development, Vodacom Business says organisations should be looking to their successful peers.  They aren’t advocating for copying their models, but rather noting how the most sophisticated organisations implementing IoT do not simply leave it to the IT department to handle.

To that end 73 percent of IoT adopters says it is simply too important to left to IT alone.

This is especially so in very large international organisations (10 000 employees or more), as 74 percent of them note that IoT is a responsibility that should span multiple departments, not just IT.

That percentage drops to 66 percent in the case of SMEs, but it still a high number regardless.

Added to this, Vodacom Business has found that large organisations have turned to AI and machine learning in order to understand and action the data that IoT systems generate. More specifically 84 percent of organisations with 1 000 employees or greater are utilising AI-based tools, with it being 74 percent among SMEs.

The right connectivity

As different IoT projects have different needs, it’s important for organisations to take a horses for courses approach when it comes to connectivity.

A monitor or sensor that sends medical data for examples needs to be reliable and capable of high-capacity, whereas one that tracks packages does not require such a high level of functionality.

According to Vodacom Business when it comes to IoT connectivity choices, there are three determining factors – time sensitivity, volume of data and cost.

With regard to time sensitivity 72 percent of IoT adopters said their data needed to be delivered within a few seconds, with 39 percent noting that hourly delays were acceptable, and the remaining 21 percent needing a combination of both.

In terms of the volume of data, 10MB per day was the threshold that Vodacom Business outlined. Perhaps unsurprisingly 70 percent of adopters said they have devices that send more than 10MB per day, which means many of the IoT projects in development at the moment are quite data rich.

Lastly cost, which looks to be one of the more interesting parts to developing an IoT strategy. This as 64 percent of adopters said they would gladly pay more to ensure speed or delivery of their solution, even though it meant costs of the project would go up significantly.

Earning trust

Rounding off the elements to consider when developing an IoT strategy is customer trust.

According to Vodacom Business there is more granular data when it comes to customer behaviour thanks to connected devices and virtual assistants, not to mention all the click-tracking that occurs online.

This in turn is raising greater public awareness around data privacy issues, explains the company. “That means to realise the greatest returns from your IoT investments, you need to earn your customers’ trust,” the report says.

94 percent of the most sophisticated IoT organisations say they’re transparent with users about what data they collect, as opposed to the least sophisticated organisations, which sits at 66 percent.

“That takes robust IoT management. And it means being open with users,” the Barometer 2019 concludes.

[Image – CC 0 Pixabay]