The world of Big Data is just getting bigger. We already live in an age where the flow of data to businesses and organizations is greater than at any point in human history. With the introduction of IoT sensors and systems, that flow is getting exponentially larger. The challenge here is that IT departments lack the ability to make sense of this massive influx of new information. However, systems integrators could be the key to understanding IoT data.
Why Systems Integrators?
So, why would integrators be best suited to leading the charge to understand IoT data? They have the experience and knowledge necessary, but they are also familiar with both new and legacy technology and they have the discipline that in-house IT teams often lack. The result – systems integrators are uniquely positioned to bridge the gap and help organizations large and small actually start to make sense of IoT-generated information
The IoT is sort of like the Wild West. It’s full of pitfalls and paths that vanish into box canyons. It’s mostly unmapped, and no one really has a grasp on best practices yet. This can pose serious issues for conventional IT staff, but systems integrators are well versed in continuous improvement practices necessary to achieve success. In fact, continuous improvement is an integrator’s bread and butter so to speak. Without a firm grounding in these principles, practices, and techniques, an integrator cannot do what they do.
Starting on the Right Foot
IoT projects are usually very large and very costly. Technology vendors generally focus on products, rather than on requirements. However, systems integrators have been trained from the very beginning to focus on defining an organization’s requirements in order to plan a project successfully. You will also find that systems integrators are far less likely to fall prey to information silos. They can work across departments within an organization with ease, and they can just as easily work across organizational boundaries to ensure that information flows where it needs to flow and to support the requirements of the organizations in question.
The Need to Marry IoT and OT
In most instances, IoT technology must be merged with operational technology or OT. However, operational technology can vary drastically from industry to industry, and even from organization to organization. System integrators usually have a very deep understanding of operational technology as applied to their particular field, and working together can bridge the gap between related niches in an industry, or even entire industries. The result is a seamless fusion of IoT technology and operational technology.
The IoT will not replace an organization’s existing infrastructure. This means that anyone attempting to make sense of IoT data will also need to be familiar with legacy systems, such as CRM platforms, or ERP software. Systems integrators have that familiarity and knowledge, allowing them to not only pair IoT and legacy systems but to derive as much value from the data generated as possible.
In the End
Ultimately, the rise of Internet of Things technology can be incredibly beneficial for businesses and organizations in all industries. However, it is also incredibly challenging. Collecting the data is not really the issue – making sense of it is. IoT analytics have the potential to affect everything, all the way down to the way a business turns a profit. It makes sense, then, to employ the professionals who have the most insight and expertise to bring to the table: system integrators.