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5 enterprise IoT use cases

The adoption of the enterprise IoT solutions is on the rise and a number of use cases prove the benefits enterprises can obtain through the deployment of internet of things tools. The use of IoT solutions is allowing enterprises to gain operational efficiencies and reduce costs through a number of different solutions.

Predictive maintenance

Predictive maintenance is an IoT/M2M solution that helps companies to lower operating and capital costs by facilitating proactive servicing and repair of assets. With the use of sensors, cameras and data analytics, managers are able to determine when a piece of equipment will fail before it does.

Predictive maintenance uses sensors which are located on the asset being monitored. These assets provide a constant flow of data connected to a central processing facility using some WAN- or LAN-based connectivity platform. Then, the captured data is continuously evaluated – for example, in a business intelligence system.

Asset optimization

One of the challenges for small, medium and large enterprises is how to use assets to their greatest potential. When assets are mismanaged or underutilized, equipment failures occur and operating expenses increase, negatively impacting the company’s revenues. Companies can take advantage of Internet of Things tool in order to improve asset optimization to take full advantage of their assets and to improve productivity.

IoT asset optimization solutions are used to analyze asset data in real-time, recommending options for improvement in the use of the assets. The solutions are designed to integrate real-time information from multiple systems and sources. Solutions also provide a single point of access to critical data being generated by key assets such as manufacturing equipment, electricity and wind turbines, oil and gas exploration equipment and healthcare devices, among others. Operations teams can have access to real-time data which is used to create predictive models to identify maintenance and upgrade requirements before failures occur.

Supply chain management

The internet of things will allow a supply chain to control the external environment and execute decisions. With the IoT, sensor-embedded factory equipment can not only communicate data about parameters such as the temperature and utilization of a machine, but also change equipment settings and process workflow to optimize performance.

Enterprise IoT solutions can make information about transport available to the entire supply chain, making the chain more transparent. The smart items monitor the goods and proactively raise an alert if transport conditions are not appropriate anymore, so the carrier is alerted and the goods have a higher chance to be saved. This possibility reduces the costs of return, the removal of defective goods and lowers transports due to lower reshipping rate.

Another key area is in-transit visibility. Key to in-transit visibility are cloud-based GPS and Radio Frequency Identification technologies, which provide identity, location and other tracking information. Data gathered from GPS and RFID technologies not only allows supply chain professionals to automate shipping and delivery by exactly predicting the time of arrival; they can monitor important details like temperature control, which impact the quality of a product in-transit.

Security and loss prevention

The retail segment are increasingly using enterprise IoT tools to reduce the impact of loss and fraud. To prevent or at least reduce the number of frauds, retail IoT brings in an additional protective layer through use of smart in-store technologies.

Traditional security solutions include video surveillance which is used to monitor stores around the clock for any unusual activity or unauthorized access. However, it is cumbersome to manually monitor the video feed and such an approach is prone to human errors. However, traditional video surveillance coupled with intelligent image detection algorithms and use of thermal sensors can help to detect human presence or movement in unauthorized zones and thereby improve security levels and reduce retail shrinkage.

Remote asset management

Retailers also have significant operational costs in maintaining infrastructure and assets such as chillers, sprinklers and air conditioners. Any fluctuation in refrigeration temperatures or humidity levels in a store, may lead to spoilage of chilled products and fresh produce, resulting in huge losses.

The solution for this is the remote monitoring of assets, which allows store owners to reduce such losses by triggering alerts when threshold values are exceeded.

To get a deep understanding of how the “internet of things” is changing the enterprise and service provider spaces, check out the Enterprise IoT Summit, March 28-29 in Austin, Texas. Event content tracks will focus on smart transportation and smart cities, as well as how the IoT can support digital transformation in vertical industries including oil and gas, agriculture, health care, manufacturing and commercial real estate.

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