With nearly every element of a manufacturing plant, business process or system being connected to the network (or made IP-aware), IoT is really heading towards a tipping point. As a result, CIOs are faced with a lot of challenges.
To get a sense of those challenges and the rewards of machine-to-machine (M2M) and the Internet of Things (IoT) for CIOs and their service providers, on our next Tune in Tuesday radio show on August 18 at 2:00 p.m. ET (11:00 a.m. PT), I'll be talking to Jim Kilmer, vice president of Verizon Enterprise Solutions' Manufacturing, Automotive, Energy and Utility Vertical practices. I'll be asking him how the boom of M2M and IoT in manufacturing helps make businesses much more efficient in how they allocate resources, manufacture products and deploy individuals.
Kilmer will also talk about how CIOs need a strong strategic plan to capitalize and monetize on this emerging trend, and how service providers are adapting their networks to accommodate the M2M and IoT manufacturing boom. Plus, he will be available after the show to take your questions in a live, 15-minute online chat.
To give you a sneak peek before the show, I did a quick email interview with Kilmer on a few key issues. Don't miss your chance to listen to what he has to say and participate in the live chat, too! (See The Manufacturing, M2M & Analytics Tipping Point.)
The New IP: What are the top challenges of manufacturing CIOs when it comes to IoT and M2M?
Jim Kilmer: The IoT and M2M surge in manufacturing is presenting CIOs with many opportunities which usher in a host of challenges as well. The tsunami of data that is being generated opens up opportunities to improve manufacturing processes and meet customer demands; however, capitalizing on these opportunities effectively requires creating new models and systems for handling requests from across the enterprise. This is also an area which remains a challenge. There are several more which I'll go into on the show.
The New IP: Have we reached the M2M and IoT tipping point yet? Is there even a tipping point or will IoT and M2M just keep expanding its reach?
JK: IoT is heading towards a tipping point, but we aren’t quite there yet. As adoption grows, we will see a point where those who have not adopted IoT will be left behind. Their competitors and even their partners will have capabilities that exceed their own, leaving them at a disadvantage when it comes to innovation, collaboration and customer-centric service.
The New IP: What changes is Verizon making on the network and services side to ease this rapid transformation for your manufacturing customers?
JK: The demand for bandwidth and network capacity has increased dramatically. The ability to help companies move away from traditional service provider timelines for provisioning capacity to a more agile model (e.g., on-demand services) has become critical. By combining the agility of software-defined networking (SDN) with virtualization, Verizon has created a powerful environment for helping our clients quickly provision resources. In addition, CIOs are looking closely at cloud environments that have security built into them so that they can control and segregate where their data resides, while also providing agility. Verizon has also been investing in and building out robust IoT platforms that are provisioning these services for our customers. Our differentiating feature is an integrated wireline and wireless environment with secure and seamless connectivity which provide integrated platforms from a single provider for our customers.
The New IP: What are the must-haves or must-dos when it comes to manufacturing CIOs coping with the data deluge -- which will only increase as more things become connected? (See The IoT & M2M Connection.)
JK: Manufacturing CIOs must have a strategic plan for not only synthesizing the deluge of data, but also harnessing it to create new opportunities and revenue streams. Manufacturers must be able to monetize the data which could involve increasing the service side of the business and driving revenue with customer product usage data. As an example, the holidays are a key buying season for consumer electronics, and retailers place orders six months in advance based on data from the prior season. This means that product development, design, feature sets, etc. must be determined quickly using data from a six-week buying season.
The New IP: What about talent? Is manufacturing struggling to find the IT talent to manage all the connectedness, perhaps even more so than the tech sector?
JK: Companies outside of the tech sector in general are struggling to find the right talent to manage all of today’s connectedness. To attract the next-generation workforce which will require a highly technical skill set, companies need to change the dynamic of their recruiting and hiring practices and the work environment they are hiring into. For manufacturing specifically, the explosion of IoT demands that manufacturers find people who are able to design robust algorithms: those who make the systems user-friendly so that the people who use them day-to-day can immediately recognize problems and know how to react.
Tune in to The New IP on Tuesday, August 18, at 2:00 p.m. ET (11:00 a.m. PT) for a great discussion with Kilmer. He'll be taking your questions during the show and afterwards in a live chat. Register here: The Manufacturing, M2M & Analytics Tipping Point
— Elizabeth Miller Coyne, Editor, The New IP