Internet of Things (IOT) and M2M solutions help early adopters drive innovation and deliver greater efficiencies to their clients
by James Kilmer
Manufacturers are experiencing a paradigm shift which is fueling the need to revolutionize the speed at which R&D happens, decisions are made and production gets done. With an empowered consumer base dictating supply and demand, accelerated time to market pressures, intense global competition and unstable markets, today's manufacturers must be able to make decisions on the spot using the latest business intelligence, while also streamlining operations and boosting worker productivity.
The Digital Dividend: First Mover Advantage
The adoption of advanced technologies, such as cloud, mobility, Internet of Things (IoT), social and analytics, is helping solve many business challenges while offering a competitive edge to the manufacturers who are leading the technology revolution. This topic is the subject of "The Digital Dividend: First-Mover Advantage," a new Harvard Business Review study sponsored by Verizon. Though the study found that 39 percent of those who identified themselves as manufacturers are cautious when it comes to investing in and deploying new technologies, early adoption is definitively translating into business benefits.
Consider these findings from the study:
- 55 percent of manufacturing respondents said that their core business strategy and business model have at least moderately changed because of new technologies
- 74 percent of respondents have improved responsiveness to customers as a result of new technologies
- 68 percent reported seeing improved employee productivity
- 39 percent agreed that mobile technology has significantly affected how they manage their businesses
IoT Fuels Innovation
Among our own manufacturing customer base, we have seen more than a 1,000 percent year-over-year increase in Machine-to-Machine/IoT adoption, as companies move to automate more processes and deliver greater efficiencies to their clients. Schindler Elevator, for example, introduced a remote monitoring platform that helps restore service 22 percent faster than traditional service platforms, due to the ability to remotely diagnose and push information to the onsite technicians.
Integrating ‘Mobile First' Across Operations
James Kilmer, Vice President of Vertical Sales, Manufacturing and Automotive, Verizon Enterprise Solutions
The study also found that manufacturers are embracing mobility to improve their internal business processes, which is consistent with a trend we are seeing with our clients. Mobilizing operations is allowing manufacturers to become more agile when managing inventory, production schedules, supply chain operations, distribution channels and customer engagement. Moving quickly to ramp up production when demand is high — or switching operations to a more strategic location that is geographically closer to a particular market — is offering a clear advantage in today's climate.
The Rising Cloud
Even though fewer than 1 in 5 manufacturing respondents reported using cloud computing extensively — largely due to security concerns — adoption rates are on the rise. Companies are looking to realize efficiencies and store the voluminous amount of data that is being collected in order to get at the critical business intelligence which is determining who wins the race.