IoT

IoT for Enterprise – Benefits, Use Cases, and Real Examples

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In today’s data-driven world enterprise IoT offers a powerful advantage. By connecting devices and collecting real-time data, businesses can optimize operations, reduce costs, improve safety, and deliver exceptional customer experiences. IoT is transforming industries from smart factories to connected logistics and positioning forward-thinking companies for success.

So, In this blog, we will look in detail at all the aspects of enterprise IoT such as its benefits and use cases, current trends, the development process of enterprise IoT apps, and real-world examples. 

What is enterprise IoT?

Enterprise IoT refers to connecting multiple devices, sensors, equipment, and assets with a range of advanced enterprise machines across big organizations. It helps in boosting the efficiency and safety of operations being done within that enterprise. 

This Embedding of sensors connected to the internet empowers enterprises to collect and analyze data to assess performance, usage patterns, remote monitoring, location tracking, and much more. 

Enterprise IoT can be deployed in multiple sectors such as manufacturing, transportation, healthcare, retail, etc. Some real-world use cases of enterprise IoT include smart factories, supply chain management, predictive maintenance, asset tracking, and energy management.

In all these areas Enterprise IoT is deployed with the intention to reduce waste, cut operational costs, improve operational efficiency, and enhance customer experience.

The main difference between consumer IoT and enterprise IoT is consumer IoT focuses mainly on smart homes and wearable tech, etc., while enterprise IoT targets commercial and industrial applications at scale

Components required for successful IoT solution

A successful IoT solution for enterprises would need the following components-: 

  1. Devices and sensors: IoT devices and sensors are physical equipment in the enterprise that collect and forward the data to the network.
  2. Network connectivity: To transfer the collected data between devices, sensors, and the cloud, IoT systems need reliable and seamless network connectivity. 
  3. Cloud infrastructure: It is required to store and process large volumes of data that is collected by the IoT devices and sensors
  4. Data Analytics: After the collection of data in the cloud, data analytics tools are used for the processing and analysis of data to generate actionable insights and prepare future strategies. 
  5. Security: IoT solutions installed within an enterprise require robust security measures to safeguard them against breaches and attacks. 
  6. Integration: Integration of IoT with the existing system of the enterprise for maximum benefit and retrieval of actionable insightful data. 
  7. User Interface: An easy-to-use and seamless interface that provides real-time data visualization is a must for successful IoT deployment. 

Latest Trends and Market Overview of IoT in Enterprises

Enterprise IoT is emerging as a crucial player in providing enterprises across sectors, with data in the form of actionable insights collected from the IoT devices and sensors installed within the organization. 

Market Overview and Trends  

  • As per Grand View research report, the global enterprise IoT was valued at $574.2 million in 2023 and is projected to touch $1.42 bn by 2030 at a CAGR of 14.1% between 2024 and 2030. This growing market share of enterprise IoT can be attributed to the growing adoption of IoT in the enterprise sector.
  • 83% of the Businesses have reported an improvement in efficiency after implementing IoT technology

Benefits and Use Cases of IoT in Business

Now we will look in brief at the following benefits of Enterprise IoT i.e. increased operational efficiency, enhanced safety and regulatory compliance, substantial cost savings, improved customer experience, and their use cases as well. Let’s start

Increased Operational Efficiency

By embedding IoT sensors in machinery, vehicles, and equipment enterprises can supervise their performance and usage patterns. Using the data from the installed IoT devices businesses can optimize operations and reduce downtime. IoT sensors can detect upcoming issues early and alert the managers before the failures occur thus removing the need for preventive maintenance downtime. 

The continuous monitoring of the equipment using IoT sensors helps enterprises shift from reactive to predictive maintenance schedules. Thus no preventive maintenance downtime helps in boosting efficiency and productivity.

Use cases

i) Smart Manufacturing

IoT sensors are capable of tracking equipment performance metrics such as pressure, vibration, and temperature and can be programmed to optimize processes, including energy usage, and automate tasks wherever possible. IoT sensors can also help in the predictive maintenance of the equipment reducing downtime. 

Big companies like Siemens, GE, and Bosch are extensively using IoT in their operations to improve their quality control, increase production, and reduce production time

ii) Connected logistics: 

With the help of IoT, logistics and cargo companies can optimize route, loading, and delivery time by tracking delivery vehicle location, driver behavior, fuel consumption, cold chain synchronization, and cargo condition. IoT sensor installation can help in tracking stock levels and expiration dates live in smart warehouses thereby automating inventory management tasks. 

IoT sensors and devices help big corporations such as UPS, FedEx, and Maersk to coordinate planes, ships, and trucks for faster and more efficient transportation. 

iii) Smart Retail: 

Use cases of IoT in retail include automated checkout, in-store analytics to analyze the no. of people coming into the store, shopping patterns, purchase history instigated by targeted promotion, optimizing inventory levels and loss preventions, etc. 

Big retailers such as Walmart and Amazon have implemented camera surveillance systems and sensors to provide a grab-and-go shopping facility in their stores without checkout queues. 

Amazon-cashierless-store

Enhanced Safety and Regulatory Compliance

Now we will look at in brief how IoT in enterprises is enhancing safety and automation in various sectors such as healthcare and retail.

Use cases:

Connected Healthcare: 

Hospitals install IoT solutions in their system to monitor medical assets, track diagnostics lab equipment, adjust HVAC in patient wards/rooms, and integrate electronic medical records collected through various IoT sensors and devices. Patient wearables can track key health parameters and metrics such as heart rate, glucose levels, Oxygen levels, etc., and help in more precise diagnosis and treatment. Major chains operating in the health sectors like Mayo Clinic and Kaiser Permanente utilize IoT sensors and devices to enhance patient experience, safety, and care coordination. 

Smart Facilities: 

Building management platforms are now integrating modern offices, campuses, and commercial buildings with IoT sensors for HVAC, lighting, occupancy detection, indoor air quality monitoring, leak detection, asset management and security surveillance, etc. to ensure optimal space utilization, energy usage, and timely maintenance based on room-level detailed insights. 

E.g. The Edge building in Amsterdam is fitted with over 30,000 sensors to automate lighting, heating, etc based on the usage pattern

Substantial Cost Savings

Now let’s have a look at how IoT in enterprises is helping to save operational costs in various sectors like manufacturing and agriculture. 

Use cases

Utilities and Energy:

With the help of IoT sensors Smart electric, oil & gas, and water meters relay usage data automatically upon detecting any anomaly and outages. Many renewable energy assets have IoT sensors to monitor performance, predict maintenance requirements, and forecast power production from that particular unit. 

Smart Agriculture: 

With the help of Smart IoT sensors and devices, farmers can utilize the collected IoT data to reduce the wastage of resources such as Fertiliser, water, etc, optimize input, increase yield per hectare, and automate tasks like irrigation and harvesting. 

Improved Customer Experience: 

Let’s now look at how IoT in enterprises is helping to improve customer shopping experience by providing enabling, inventory management and optimization, smart store and foot traffic analysis, in-store analytics, and heat mapping. 

Use cases

Improved Customer Experience with Smart Retail:

Personalized in-store experiences and services help in offering a better customer experience, optimize store operations, and drive sales as well. Let’s look in detail IoT help improve customer experience through Smart retail. 

Inventory Management and Optimization: 

Walmart is using IoT sensors and RFID to track inventory levels, monitor product movement, and manage inventory in real time. With the help of data collected from IoT sensors, Walmart can ensure that shelves are adequately stocked, and out-of-stock and overstocking situations don’t come up. This smart inventory management and optimization with the help of IoT systems has helped Walmart increase sales, reduce carrying costs and enhance customer’s in-store experience. 

Smart Store and Foot Traffic Analysis: 

Amazon has taken the meaning of Smart stores to the next level with its Amazon Go stores. These stores use IoT sensors, computer vision, and ML algorithms to create a cashier-less shopping experience for the customers. With the help of sensors, computer vision, and ML these smart stores track customer movements, monitor product interactions, and automatically charge the customer for the items they take off the shelves, thus eliminating the need for traditional checkout counters and cashiers. 

In-Store Analytics and Heat Mapping: 

Zara has installed IoT sensors and analytics software in its store to gather insights on customer behavior patterns, preferences, and demographics. By analyzing this data on customer behavior, Zara optimizes its store layouts, product placement, and marketing strategies to improve customer experience and meet their needs and preferences. 

Step by Step to Develop an Enterprise IoT App

App Conceptualization-:  This step involves understanding the business objectives, potential IoT use cases, impact on existing systems, and strategic planning to ensure that the solution aligns with the larger goal of the enterprise. 

Analyzing client requirements-:  This phase focuses on understanding the technical and economic aspects and gathering requirements to ensure that the solutions meet business requirements, user expectations, and technical requirements. 

IoT Platform Selection-: This step involves choosing an IoT platform that fulfills the requirement of the project after analyzing compatibility with the existing infrastructure, scalability, support for analytics, and security features.

UI/UX Design-: This phase focuses on designing the system architecture including device selection, data flow diagrams, and the integration architecture with the existing system of the enterprise. This step involves careful implementation to ensure scalability, security, and efficient data management. 

Prototyping and Validation-: This step involves developing a prototype to validate the concept with the stakeholders to identify potential issues early and improve the user experience as well. 

Development-: This phase focuses on building IoT applications integrating them with required systems and ensuring a proper seamless integration of the IoT platform and enterprise system. 

Testing and Quality Assurance-: Conduct thorough unit, integration, system, and security testing to ensure that the application meets all the enterprise needs and is free of vulnerabilities. 

Deployment and Launch-: Before the full-scale deployment, test the application in a beta phase to monitor its performance and fix any bugs. Plan the complete deployment cautiously to carefully minimize the disruption to the existing operations of the enterprises.

Real-World Examples of IoT in Enterprises

Now let’s look at some real-world examples of IoT in enterprises. 

  1. Predictive Maintenance in Manufacturing

Example: General Electric (GE) uses IoT sensors in their manufacturing plants to monitor the health and performance of machinery in real time. The sensors collect data on temperature, vibration, and other parameters, which are then analyzed to predict potential failures before they occur.

  1. Smart Logistics and Fleet Management

Example: DHL utilizes IoT technologies to optimize its logistics and supply chain operations. IoT devices track the location, condition, and status of shipments in real-time, allowing for better route planning, inventory management, and reduced delivery times.

  1. Digital Farming and Agriculture

Example: IoT devices (sensors) collect and send large amounts of real-time data to the cloud or a data center. This helps in climate monitoring, greenhouse condition monitoring, crop monitoring, cattle monitoring, precision farming, and equipment control, etc. 


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Conclusion

Enterprise IoT interconnects sensors and devices across the enterprise and generates actionable data to optimize operations, lower operational expenses, increase safety, and provide customers with improved experiences. Whether it is smart maintenance, energy management, supply chain management, smart agriculture, or retail, IoT is transforming all these tasks and fields. 

Although IoT has a lot of scope for improvement one thing is very clear companies investing in IoT are well-positioned to lead their respective since automation and data insights provided by enterprise IoT will catapult them way ahead of their competitors.