The MIT Sloan Management Review recently released an extremely comprehensive report on IoT drawn from conversations with 1,480 businesses, managers, executive and IT insiders. The report includes a treasure trove of data, opinions, and advice. One thing that jumped out to me while parsing through the report are several statistically backed ways that companies can leverage IoT to increase business value.
With the far-reaching data-mining capabilities of IoT, companies can easily find themselves overwhelmed with data. For instance, GE is reported to have “50 million data variables from 10 million sensors”. That’s A LOT of data. With a seemingly infinite amounts of data at hand, the question turns from how much data you have to how well you can analyze it. According to the report, companies with a strong analytics foundation are three times more likely to get value from IoT than those without. That increased value comes in the improved efficacy of projects and in knowing which projects are worth investing in. A staggering 45% of respondents with “good or excellent” analytics can accurately estimate returns on investments, while 19% of companies without good or excellent analytics expertise could. The key takeaway: Sound analytics is key to maximizing value from IoT. With 49% of companies still lagging behind in analytics capabilities, there’s still a lot of room for improvement.
Given that IoT is cutting edge technology, it requires talent that is specifically trained in how to handle it. Many businesses realize this. According to the report, 49% of respondents indicated that they need to improve their IoT talent base in order to best leverage IoT technology. Making sure that your company hires IoT is the most straightforward way grow an IoT knowledge base, but it’s not the only one. More than a third of respondents make use of a consulting service and over 40% partner with other organizations that are using IoT. Along these lines, companies can benefit from building relationships with companies that are providing IoT devices. Just like it helps to learn from the mechanic when you bring your car in to get repaired, it helps to learn from your IoT designers.
According to the older paradigm of business, the last thing a company should do is share its data with others. After all, direct competitors may use that data against them and what interest could customers possibly find from data? Now, not only are more and more companies sharing data with customers and suppliers and competitors (66% of respondents in the report), but companies are actually benefitting from increased exchange of information. When companies share data with others, others are more likely to share data with companies. According to the report, the longer a company uses IoT, the more likely it is to share data. What’s more, companies that share data with competitors are more likely to cultivate business value from IoT. The benefit of sharing data is clear.
Perhaps the greatest takeaway from the report is the emphasis on collaboration. With Analytics, Talent, and Data in general–IoT is pushing companies towards working with one another, making for a more harmonious, and ultimately more innovative market.