A recent survey by Cisco shows that the implementation of IoT is delayed 60% of the time, and only 26% of respondents claim their deployment has been successful. Deploying IoT in the enterprise ecosystem comes with numerous stations of the cross, fraught with technical complexities and strong possibilities of misdirection due to the involvement of many stakeholders.
But the bottom line of a successful deployment of the Internet of Things is that it must enhance the value that the business offers according to the goals of the implementation. For this to happen, the Internet of Things technology must be deployed through efficient and effective processes.
Below are 5 stages which an IoT development must be processed through in order to eliminate hiccups in the implementation.
Conceptualization and Planning of IoT projects
In this stage of IoT projects, the main focus is not on the technology, but on the business logic and how IoT can serve to enhance the value of the business. Companies that jump into the technological aspect of the enterprise IoT solution first without properly articulating the impact of the technology on the business usually end up putting the cart ahead of the horse.
In such cases, the business owners would first have an idea of an IoT set up, and without thoroughly examining the impact of the technology on the business, set out to create and implement it. The IoT development might turn out to be an excellent device but might have very little to no effect on customer satisfaction or the enabling capabilities of the enterprise ecosystem and cloud environment.
To avoid this, the business must first determine goals, parameters for success, and available technical inventories before considering the technology. This stage also requires inputs from a team of qualified experts who have a clear understanding of the opportunities, complexities, and pitfalls associated with IoT projects.
Acquisition of Hardware
After determining the goals and the business logic to be supported by IoT projects, the next thing is to acquire an inventory of devices that will deliver the goals of IoT projects. This stage entails the creation of network design blueprint which comes with specifications that bring about the fulfillment of IoT projects goals. This is also the stage that determines the range of components, their specifications, and their location.
This might require a contract between the business and OEM to acquire hardware such as sensors, actuators, bridges, etc. The technical knowledge and expertise for integrating the devices into the IoT platform are also acquired at this stage.
Architecting and Software Installation
This stage entails the stipulation of benchmarks for the successful integration of the different components, so that performance issues can easily be identified and resolved down the line. This stage caters to the creation of the software architecture, the performance and signal strength of the RF system, and the power management systems.
This is also the stage where IoT security and privacy issues are dealt with. To enhance security in the project, the business owners need to ensure that dataset remains unnamed, compressed and inscribed prior to processing. The development team needs to also create a user management system that limits access to sensitive data and business intelligence system and determine the personnel who control the devices.
Testing and Certification
Certification is usually imperative for both the network and devices used in cellular-based IoT projects. Without certifying the device and network, it’s highly unlikely for the business to obtain regulatory and carrier sign-offs that give the green-light for the technology to be rolled out to customers.
This stage is also as complicated as nearly any other stage in the projects. The developers need to present the test facilities of the regulatory bodies with the right samples, configuration and spec documents, in order to secure timely approval.
Note also that the testing phase isn’t just about the technology, but about the business processes and logic supported by the projects.
The Final Deployment Stage
After successfully undergoing the testing and approval stage, the technology becomes ready for end users. This is the stage where the IoT technology is deployed to enhance production, minimize operational cost, increase profitability, and improve customer satisfaction.
However, this stage should not end when the technology is finally rolled out but should continue in order to scale the technology as the business continues to grow. The business administrators need to continue to find ways to improve on the technology and the benefits that the technology delivers to the enterprise ecosystem. They can consult experts as well as IoT solution vendors for ways to improve their IoT platform.
The easiest way to avoid complications and setbacks in IoT projects is to first start off with planning and ideation, and then acquire the necessary inventory of devices, and then install software on cloud platform and the network of devices, and then carry out tests and obtain the necessary approvals, before finally deploying the user-ready IoT technology.