The Key To Gaining ROI From IoT

Daniel Kehrer

On the enterprise technology hype scale, the Internet of Things is a heavyweight champ. There’s only one problem. So far, this “transformative trend” – as Gartner calls it in the firm’s 2016 IoT Hype Cycle report – has remained largely that: Hype.

But that’s about to change. New enabling technologies – including Bluetooth 5, proximity awareness, and others – will speed the path to IoT value creation. The rollout of Bluetooth 5 in early 2017, for example, will quadruple Bluetooth range, double its speed and boost data broadcasting capacity by 800%.

These speed, range, and capacity improvements will open vast new IoT opportunities for companies to build a more accessible and interoperable IoT. This in turn will finally make hypothetical enterprise and industrial IoT use cases a reality.

According to a recent McKinsey Global Institute (MGI) report, the hype surrounding IoT may in fact understate its full potential. McKinsey predicts that if policymakers and businesses get it right, IoT’s linking of physical and digital worlds will generate between $4 trillion (their low estimate) and $11.1 trillion per year in economic value by 2025.

And the bulk of that value – nearly 70% of it, says McKinsey – will come from B2B applications such as construction and manufacturing where IoT technology helps optimize equipment placement and maintenance, improve safety and security, and much more.

Meanwhile, technology suppliers are ramping up IoT-related platforms to help enterprises design, implement, and operate solutions that fill the gap between the ability to collect data and the capacity to capture, analyze, and act on it.

The power of proximity-awareness technology

One of the most powerful tools in helping enterprise organizations gain ROI from IoT is proximity awareness. Smart proximity awareness technology will play a critical role in how enterprise organizations extract value from IoT or, alternatively, IoE – the Internet of Everything.

It’s also IoE because the value-creation chain includes more than just things. It involves people, data streams, locations, equipment, communication systems, and more, all connected to the Internet. Proximity-awareness technology brings these scattered pieces of IoT together into a cohesive, cyber-physical system that organizations can analyze and act on to solve problems, optimize time, and improve productivity. This is increasingly important as connected “things” gain autonomy and begin taking more actions on their own.

Proximity solutions enable organizations to gain greater order, efficiency, automation, and predictability from IoT. They solve for situations where people and things are dispersed haphazardly and sometimes unaccounted for, eliminating guesswork and costly inefficiencies. They enable organizations to see where things are, what’s happening with them, and how to make them more effective and productive.

Smart proximity awareness technology will also enable value creation from enterprise “wearables” – always on, connected computing displays worn on the body for easy, hands-free access to show contextually relevant information – as these devices replace bar code scanners and handheld GPS.

Proximity makes IoT work

Many companies already generate large amounts of data from IoT but only use a fraction of it. That’s because they focus mainly on detecting breakdowns or other anomalies, rather than envisioning new, value-building uses. By deploying smart proximity-awareness technology, companies can realize greater value from IoT by using it to predict and optimize a wide range of activities. As this happens, the old mindset of repair and replace becomes a new mindset of predict and prevent.

Enriching corporate data with proximity awareness pushes several things forward. Knowing where your people, inanimate assets, suppliers, supplies, and customers are – and when their joint movements are actionable – allows automated responses to specific conditions of convergence and divergence.

And by standardizing proximity services in an open platform, enterprises can gather mobile and IoT telemetry, track assets and people in motion, determine when any two or more of them are converging or diverging, and act by triggering prox­imity-aware messages or instructions to both people and things.

As the world becomes increasingly networked with nearly everything linked to everything else, production and supplier networks are expected to grow enormously, meaning manufacturers will need to coordinate more global suppliers. At the same time, boundaries that now separate individual factories and other facilities will be eliminated as IoT and prox­imity awareness connect multiple factories and the people who run them.

According to MGI, “The potential value that could be unlocked with IoT applications in factory settings could be as much as $3.7 trillion in 2025, or about one-third of all potential economic value. Cities are the next largest, with value of up to $1.7 trillion per year.”

Building flexible solutions at scale

But building IoT systems and solutions as vertical silos and operational islands inhibits the ability to gain strategic value. Smart proximity awareness based on a scalable and horizontal technology foundation lowers barriers and makes it easier to integrate all of the pieces into a single whole that is easy to operate, expand, and maintain.

Now is the time to consider the IoT business opportunities at hand, set a vision, establish a plan, and put smart proximity awareness to work as a strategic differentiator. As McKinsey points out, “Businesses that fail to invest in IoT capabilities, culture, and processes, as well as in technology, are likely to fall behind competitors that do.”


About Daniel Kehrer

Daniel Kehrer has 20+ years leadership and hands-on execution experience as a technology, content marketing and digital media entrepreneur and industry thought leader. He has built & scaled multi-channel and global marketing and content creation teams and engines for VC- & PE-backed tech companies leading to acquisitions totaling nearly $1 billion. He is currently Founder & CEO of BizBest Media Corp. and CMO.partners, working with select startup and growth-stage tech companies. He’s written for Forbes, Harvard Business Review, The New York Times and Digitalist Magazine, among many other publications, writes a syndicated weekly column, is the author of seven books and earned his MBA from UCLA Anderson.

Automation: The Future of the Internet of Things at the Workplace

Shelly Dutton

Now that we have explored the home of the future, what about the workplace?

Sure, we all know about the warehouse robots used by companies such as Amazon, Crate & Barrel, Gap, and others. But where else can the Internet of Things automate business operations in the near future?

Take a look at what the future may hold for office workers

  • Facilities managers may experience the ease of managing the building and office equipment. Imagine copiers and printers sensing when they are low on paper or toner and automatically entering a work order or inventory request into CAFM and CMMS systems. Elevators will be able to tell you when they get stuck. HVAC systems will alert you when their filters need changing. And components like pumps would tell you when they start heating up, indicating there is a problem. Even individual lights, outlets, or thermostats could be connected to the Internet of Things and controlled.
  • IT professionals will see distributed computing at the device level help optimize the performance of machines and processes. Infrastructures will enable device-to-device communication, replacing the idea of servers that push information to devices. Instead, devices will be able to communicate with each other. And as a result, traditional systems will morph into cloud-based software. By automating these networks and removing the “middlemen of IT architecture,” the entire infrastructure will be able to self-configure, self-regulate, and suggest efficiency improvements.
  • Plant managers will go beyond lean manufacturing. Consider a plant that stocks to a minimum. Components are constantly traveling across the planet, often arriving within a day. With the Internet of Things, this system extends beyond individual factories to interconnect multiple factories and regions – enabling sensors to automatically trigger ordering and shipping of parts when stocks fall below a certain level.
  • HR managers may embrace predictive analysis to understand expected workloads and skills needed in the future. They can easily make strategic plans that factor in external economic and political trends. Resource plans can be made based on projected internal and external workforce supply. And organizational modeling will be based on information from all enterprise processes – combining data from finance, HR, logistics, supply chain, and sales.

A brave new world

As you can see, the Internet of Things is bringing together information in more useful and creative ways. And we have only scratched the surface. Automation will not avoid the Internet of Things, but rather will be at the heart of it. And benefits – such as increased operational efficiency, lower costs, and higher productivity – are only the start.

Do you have ideas on how your business can be automated with this information? I’d love to read your thoughts below.

 


Shaily Kumar

About Shaily Kumar

Shailendra has been on a quest to help organisations make money out of data and has generated an incremental value of over one billion dollars through analytics and cognitive processes. With a global experience of more than two decades, Shailendra has worked with a myriad of Corporations, Consulting Services and Software Companies in various industries like Retail, Telecommunications, Financial Services and Travel - to help them realise incremental value hidden in zettabytes of data. He has published multiple articles in international journals about Analytics and Cognitive Solutions; and recently published “Making Money out of Data” which showcases five business stories from various industries on how successful companies make millions of dollars in incremental value using analytics. Prior to joining SAP, Shailendra was Partner / Analytics & Cognitive Leader, Asia at IBM where he drove the cognitive business across Asia. Before joining IBM, he was the Managing Director and Analytics Lead at Accenture delivering value to its clients across Australia and New Zealand. Coming from the industry, Shailendra held key Executive positions driving analytics at Woolworths and Coles in the past. Please feel to connect on: Linkedin: http://linkedin.com/in/shaily Twitter: https://twitter.com/meisshaily

Tags:

IoT , Awareness

Automation: The Future of the Internet of Things at the Workplace

Shelly Dutton

Now that we have explored the home of the future, what about the workplace?

Sure, we all know about the warehouse robots used by companies such as Amazon, Crate & Barrel, Gap, and others. But where else can the Internet of Things automate business operations in the near future?

Take a look at what the future may hold for office workers

  • Facilities managers may experience the ease of managing the building and office equipment. Imagine copiers and printers sensing when they are low on paper or toner and automatically entering a work order or inventory request into CAFM and CMMS systems. Elevators will be able to tell you when they get stuck. HVAC systems will alert you when their filters need changing. And components like pumps would tell you when they start heating up, indicating there is a problem. Even individual lights, outlets, or thermostats could be connected to the Internet of Things and controlled.
  • IT professionals will see distributed computing at the device level help optimize the performance of machines and processes. Infrastructures will enable device-to-device communication, replacing the idea of servers that push information to devices. Instead, devices will be able to communicate with each other. And as a result, traditional systems will morph into cloud-based software. By automating these networks and removing the “middlemen of IT architecture,” the entire infrastructure will be able to self-configure, self-regulate, and suggest efficiency improvements.
  • Plant managers will go beyond lean manufacturing. Consider a plant that stocks to a minimum. Components are constantly traveling across the planet, often arriving within a day. With the Internet of Things, this system extends beyond individual factories to interconnect multiple factories and regions – enabling sensors to automatically trigger ordering and shipping of parts when stocks fall below a certain level.
  • HR managers may embrace predictive analysis to understand expected workloads and skills needed in the future. They can easily make strategic plans that factor in external economic and political trends. Resource plans can be made based on projected internal and external workforce supply. And organizational modeling will be based on information from all enterprise processes – combining data from finance, HR, logistics, supply chain, and sales.

A brave new world

As you can see, the Internet of Things is bringing together information in more useful and creative ways. And we have only scratched the surface. Automation will not avoid the Internet of Things, but rather will be at the heart of it. And benefits – such as increased operational efficiency, lower costs, and higher productivity – are only the start.

Do you have ideas on how your business can be automated with this information? I’d love to read your thoughts below.

 


Tags:

IoT , Awareness

Automation: The Future of the Internet of Things at the Workplace

Shelly Dutton

Now that we have explored the home of the future, what about the workplace?

Sure, we all know about the warehouse robots used by companies such as Amazon, Crate & Barrel, Gap, and others. But where else can the Internet of Things automate business operations in the near future?

Take a look at what the future may hold for office workers

  • Facilities managers may experience the ease of managing the building and office equipment. Imagine copiers and printers sensing when they are low on paper or toner and automatically entering a work order or inventory request into CAFM and CMMS systems. Elevators will be able to tell you when they get stuck. HVAC systems will alert you when their filters need changing. And components like pumps would tell you when they start heating up, indicating there is a problem. Even individual lights, outlets, or thermostats could be connected to the Internet of Things and controlled.
  • IT professionals will see distributed computing at the device level help optimize the performance of machines and processes. Infrastructures will enable device-to-device communication, replacing the idea of servers that push information to devices. Instead, devices will be able to communicate with each other. And as a result, traditional systems will morph into cloud-based software. By automating these networks and removing the “middlemen of IT architecture,” the entire infrastructure will be able to self-configure, self-regulate, and suggest efficiency improvements.
  • Plant managers will go beyond lean manufacturing. Consider a plant that stocks to a minimum. Components are constantly traveling across the planet, often arriving within a day. With the Internet of Things, this system extends beyond individual factories to interconnect multiple factories and regions – enabling sensors to automatically trigger ordering and shipping of parts when stocks fall below a certain level.
  • HR managers may embrace predictive analysis to understand expected workloads and skills needed in the future. They can easily make strategic plans that factor in external economic and political trends. Resource plans can be made based on projected internal and external workforce supply. And organizational modeling will be based on information from all enterprise processes – combining data from finance, HR, logistics, supply chain, and sales.

A brave new world

As you can see, the Internet of Things is bringing together information in more useful and creative ways. And we have only scratched the surface. Automation will not avoid the Internet of Things, but rather will be at the heart of it. And benefits – such as increased operational efficiency, lower costs, and higher productivity – are only the start.

Do you have ideas on how your business can be automated with this information? I’d love to read your thoughts below.

 


Tags:

IoT , Awareness

Automation: The Future of the Internet of Things at the Workplace

Shelly Dutton

Now that we have explored the home of the future, what about the workplace?

Sure, we all know about the warehouse robots used by companies such as Amazon, Crate & Barrel, Gap, and others. But where else can the Internet of Things automate business operations in the near future?

Take a look at what the future may hold for office workers

  • Facilities managers may experience the ease of managing the building and office equipment. Imagine copiers and printers sensing when they are low on paper or toner and automatically entering a work order or inventory request into CAFM and CMMS systems. Elevators will be able to tell you when they get stuck. HVAC systems will alert you when their filters need changing. And components like pumps would tell you when they start heating up, indicating there is a problem. Even individual lights, outlets, or thermostats could be connected to the Internet of Things and controlled.
  • IT professionals will see distributed computing at the device level help optimize the performance of machines and processes. Infrastructures will enable device-to-device communication, replacing the idea of servers that push information to devices. Instead, devices will be able to communicate with each other. And as a result, traditional systems will morph into cloud-based software. By automating these networks and removing the “middlemen of IT architecture,” the entire infrastructure will be able to self-configure, self-regulate, and suggest efficiency improvements.
  • Plant managers will go beyond lean manufacturing. Consider a plant that stocks to a minimum. Components are constantly traveling across the planet, often arriving within a day. With the Internet of Things, this system extends beyond individual factories to interconnect multiple factories and regions – enabling sensors to automatically trigger ordering and shipping of parts when stocks fall below a certain level.
  • HR managers may embrace predictive analysis to understand expected workloads and skills needed in the future. They can easily make strategic plans that factor in external economic and political trends. Resource plans can be made based on projected internal and external workforce supply. And organizational modeling will be based on information from all enterprise processes – combining data from finance, HR, logistics, supply chain, and sales.

A brave new world

As you can see, the Internet of Things is bringing together information in more useful and creative ways. And we have only scratched the surface. Automation will not avoid the Internet of Things, but rather will be at the heart of it. And benefits – such as increased operational efficiency, lower costs, and higher productivity – are only the start.

Do you have ideas on how your business can be automated with this information? I’d love to read your thoughts below.

 


David Parrish

About David Parrish

David Parrish is the senior global director of Industrial Machinery & Components Solutions Marketing for SAP. Before joining SAP, he held various product and industry marketing positions with J.D. Edwards, PeopleSoft, and QAD going back to 1999.

Tags:

IoT , Awareness

Automation: The Future of the Internet of Things at the Workplace

Shelly Dutton

Now that we have explored the home of the future, what about the workplace?

Sure, we all know about the warehouse robots used by companies such as Amazon, Crate & Barrel, Gap, and others. But where else can the Internet of Things automate business operations in the near future?

Take a look at what the future may hold for office workers

  • Facilities managers may experience the ease of managing the building and office equipment. Imagine copiers and printers sensing when they are low on paper or toner and automatically entering a work order or inventory request into CAFM and CMMS systems. Elevators will be able to tell you when they get stuck. HVAC systems will alert you when their filters need changing. And components like pumps would tell you when they start heating up, indicating there is a problem. Even individual lights, outlets, or thermostats could be connected to the Internet of Things and controlled.
  • IT professionals will see distributed computing at the device level help optimize the performance of machines and processes. Infrastructures will enable device-to-device communication, replacing the idea of servers that push information to devices. Instead, devices will be able to communicate with each other. And as a result, traditional systems will morph into cloud-based software. By automating these networks and removing the “middlemen of IT architecture,” the entire infrastructure will be able to self-configure, self-regulate, and suggest efficiency improvements.
  • Plant managers will go beyond lean manufacturing. Consider a plant that stocks to a minimum. Components are constantly traveling across the planet, often arriving within a day. With the Internet of Things, this system extends beyond individual factories to interconnect multiple factories and regions – enabling sensors to automatically trigger ordering and shipping of parts when stocks fall below a certain level.
  • HR managers may embrace predictive analysis to understand expected workloads and skills needed in the future. They can easily make strategic plans that factor in external economic and political trends. Resource plans can be made based on projected internal and external workforce supply. And organizational modeling will be based on information from all enterprise processes – combining data from finance, HR, logistics, supply chain, and sales.

A brave new world

As you can see, the Internet of Things is bringing together information in more useful and creative ways. And we have only scratched the surface. Automation will not avoid the Internet of Things, but rather will be at the heart of it. And benefits – such as increased operational efficiency, lower costs, and higher productivity – are only the start.

Do you have ideas on how your business can be automated with this information? I’d love to read your thoughts below.

 


Ralf Kern

About Ralf Kern

Ralf Kern is the Global Vice President, Business Unit Retail, at SAP, responsible for the future direction of SAP’s solution and global Go-to-Market strategy for Omnicommerce Retail, leading them into today’s digital reality.

Tags:

IoT , Awareness

Automation: The Future of the Internet of Things at the Workplace

Shelly Dutton

Now that we have explored the home of the future, what about the workplace?

Sure, we all know about the warehouse robots used by companies such as Amazon, Crate & Barrel, Gap, and others. But where else can the Internet of Things automate business operations in the near future?

Take a look at what the future may hold for office workers

  • Facilities managers may experience the ease of managing the building and office equipment. Imagine copiers and printers sensing when they are low on paper or toner and automatically entering a work order or inventory request into CAFM and CMMS systems. Elevators will be able to tell you when they get stuck. HVAC systems will alert you when their filters need changing. And components like pumps would tell you when they start heating up, indicating there is a problem. Even individual lights, outlets, or thermostats could be connected to the Internet of Things and controlled.
  • IT professionals will see distributed computing at the device level help optimize the performance of machines and processes. Infrastructures will enable device-to-device communication, replacing the idea of servers that push information to devices. Instead, devices will be able to communicate with each other. And as a result, traditional systems will morph into cloud-based software. By automating these networks and removing the “middlemen of IT architecture,” the entire infrastructure will be able to self-configure, self-regulate, and suggest efficiency improvements.
  • Plant managers will go beyond lean manufacturing. Consider a plant that stocks to a minimum. Components are constantly traveling across the planet, often arriving within a day. With the Internet of Things, this system extends beyond individual factories to interconnect multiple factories and regions – enabling sensors to automatically trigger ordering and shipping of parts when stocks fall below a certain level.
  • HR managers may embrace predictive analysis to understand expected workloads and skills needed in the future. They can easily make strategic plans that factor in external economic and political trends. Resource plans can be made based on projected internal and external workforce supply. And organizational modeling will be based on information from all enterprise processes – combining data from finance, HR, logistics, supply chain, and sales.

A brave new world

As you can see, the Internet of Things is bringing together information in more useful and creative ways. And we have only scratched the surface. Automation will not avoid the Internet of Things, but rather will be at the heart of it. And benefits – such as increased operational efficiency, lower costs, and higher productivity – are only the start.

Do you have ideas on how your business can be automated with this information? I’d love to read your thoughts below.

 


About Andre Smith

Andre Smith is an Internet, marketing, and e-commerce specialist with several years of experience in the industry. He has watched as the world of online business has grown and adapted to new technologies, and he has made it his mission to help keep businesses informed and up to date.

Tags:

IoT , Awareness

Automation: The Future of the Internet of Things at the Workplace

Shelly Dutton

Now that we have explored the home of the future, what about the workplace?

Sure, we all know about the warehouse robots used by companies such as Amazon, Crate & Barrel, Gap, and others. But where else can the Internet of Things automate business operations in the near future?

Take a look at what the future may hold for office workers

  • Facilities managers may experience the ease of managing the building and office equipment. Imagine copiers and printers sensing when they are low on paper or toner and automatically entering a work order or inventory request into CAFM and CMMS systems. Elevators will be able to tell you when they get stuck. HVAC systems will alert you when their filters need changing. And components like pumps would tell you when they start heating up, indicating there is a problem. Even individual lights, outlets, or thermostats could be connected to the Internet of Things and controlled.
  • IT professionals will see distributed computing at the device level help optimize the performance of machines and processes. Infrastructures will enable device-to-device communication, replacing the idea of servers that push information to devices. Instead, devices will be able to communicate with each other. And as a result, traditional systems will morph into cloud-based software. By automating these networks and removing the “middlemen of IT architecture,” the entire infrastructure will be able to self-configure, self-regulate, and suggest efficiency improvements.
  • Plant managers will go beyond lean manufacturing. Consider a plant that stocks to a minimum. Components are constantly traveling across the planet, often arriving within a day. With the Internet of Things, this system extends beyond individual factories to interconnect multiple factories and regions – enabling sensors to automatically trigger ordering and shipping of parts when stocks fall below a certain level.
  • HR managers may embrace predictive analysis to understand expected workloads and skills needed in the future. They can easily make strategic plans that factor in external economic and political trends. Resource plans can be made based on projected internal and external workforce supply. And organizational modeling will be based on information from all enterprise processes – combining data from finance, HR, logistics, supply chain, and sales.

A brave new world

As you can see, the Internet of Things is bringing together information in more useful and creative ways. And we have only scratched the surface. Automation will not avoid the Internet of Things, but rather will be at the heart of it. And benefits – such as increased operational efficiency, lower costs, and higher productivity – are only the start.

Do you have ideas on how your business can be automated with this information? I’d love to read your thoughts below.

 


About Paul Dearlove

Paul Dearlove is General Manager - Retail, SAP ANZ based in Sydney. As a former professional athlete, Paul has a keen focus on high performance and believes there are many skills that can be transferred to the corporate environment.

Tags:

IoT , Awareness

Automation: The Future of the Internet of Things at the Workplace

Shelly Dutton

Now that we have explored the home of the future, what about the workplace?

Sure, we all know about the warehouse robots used by companies such as Amazon, Crate & Barrel, Gap, and others. But where else can the Internet of Things automate business operations in the near future?

Take a look at what the future may hold for office workers

  • Facilities managers may experience the ease of managing the building and office equipment. Imagine copiers and printers sensing when they are low on paper or toner and automatically entering a work order or inventory request into CAFM and CMMS systems. Elevators will be able to tell you when they get stuck. HVAC systems will alert you when their filters need changing. And components like pumps would tell you when they start heating up, indicating there is a problem. Even individual lights, outlets, or thermostats could be connected to the Internet of Things and controlled.
  • IT professionals will see distributed computing at the device level help optimize the performance of machines and processes. Infrastructures will enable device-to-device communication, replacing the idea of servers that push information to devices. Instead, devices will be able to communicate with each other. And as a result, traditional systems will morph into cloud-based software. By automating these networks and removing the “middlemen of IT architecture,” the entire infrastructure will be able to self-configure, self-regulate, and suggest efficiency improvements.
  • Plant managers will go beyond lean manufacturing. Consider a plant that stocks to a minimum. Components are constantly traveling across the planet, often arriving within a day. With the Internet of Things, this system extends beyond individual factories to interconnect multiple factories and regions – enabling sensors to automatically trigger ordering and shipping of parts when stocks fall below a certain level.
  • HR managers may embrace predictive analysis to understand expected workloads and skills needed in the future. They can easily make strategic plans that factor in external economic and political trends. Resource plans can be made based on projected internal and external workforce supply. And organizational modeling will be based on information from all enterprise processes – combining data from finance, HR, logistics, supply chain, and sales.

A brave new world

As you can see, the Internet of Things is bringing together information in more useful and creative ways. And we have only scratched the surface. Automation will not avoid the Internet of Things, but rather will be at the heart of it. And benefits – such as increased operational efficiency, lower costs, and higher productivity – are only the start.

Do you have ideas on how your business can be automated with this information? I’d love to read your thoughts below.

 


Marina Simonians

About Marina Simonians

Marina Simonians is the Head of Global ISV GTM Strategy at SAP responsible for building new global ISV software driven initiatives for Big Data, AI/ML, Advanced analytics and IoT. With a passion for ecosystems she believes partnerships are most critical success factor in today’s software-driven market.

Tags:

IoT , Awareness

Automation: The Future of the Internet of Things at the Workplace

Shelly Dutton

Now that we have explored the home of the future, what about the workplace?

Sure, we all know about the warehouse robots used by companies such as Amazon, Crate & Barrel, Gap, and others. But where else can the Internet of Things automate business operations in the near future?

Take a look at what the future may hold for office workers

  • Facilities managers may experience the ease of managing the building and office equipment. Imagine copiers and printers sensing when they are low on paper or toner and automatically entering a work order or inventory request into CAFM and CMMS systems. Elevators will be able to tell you when they get stuck. HVAC systems will alert you when their filters need changing. And components like pumps would tell you when they start heating up, indicating there is a problem. Even individual lights, outlets, or thermostats could be connected to the Internet of Things and controlled.
  • IT professionals will see distributed computing at the device level help optimize the performance of machines and processes. Infrastructures will enable device-to-device communication, replacing the idea of servers that push information to devices. Instead, devices will be able to communicate with each other. And as a result, traditional systems will morph into cloud-based software. By automating these networks and removing the “middlemen of IT architecture,” the entire infrastructure will be able to self-configure, self-regulate, and suggest efficiency improvements.
  • Plant managers will go beyond lean manufacturing. Consider a plant that stocks to a minimum. Components are constantly traveling across the planet, often arriving within a day. With the Internet of Things, this system extends beyond individual factories to interconnect multiple factories and regions – enabling sensors to automatically trigger ordering and shipping of parts when stocks fall below a certain level.
  • HR managers may embrace predictive analysis to understand expected workloads and skills needed in the future. They can easily make strategic plans that factor in external economic and political trends. Resource plans can be made based on projected internal and external workforce supply. And organizational modeling will be based on information from all enterprise processes – combining data from finance, HR, logistics, supply chain, and sales.

A brave new world

As you can see, the Internet of Things is bringing together information in more useful and creative ways. And we have only scratched the surface. Automation will not avoid the Internet of Things, but rather will be at the heart of it. And benefits – such as increased operational efficiency, lower costs, and higher productivity – are only the start.

Do you have ideas on how your business can be automated with this information? I’d love to read your thoughts below.

 


Jennifer Horowitz

About Jennifer Horowitz

Jennifer Horowitz is a journalist with over 15 years of experience working in the technology, financial, hospitality, real estate, healthcare, manufacturing, not for profit, and retail sectors. She specializes in the field of analytics, offering management consulting serving global clients from midsize to large-scale organizations. Within the field of analytics, she helps higher-level organizations define their metrics strategies, create concepts, define problems, conduct analysis, problem solve, and execute.

Tags:

IoT , Awareness

Automation: The Future of the Internet of Things at the Workplace

Shelly Dutton

Now that we have explored the home of the future, what about the workplace?

Sure, we all know about the warehouse robots used by companies such as Amazon, Crate & Barrel, Gap, and others. But where else can the Internet of Things automate business operations in the near future?

Take a look at what the future may hold for office workers

  • Facilities managers may experience the ease of managing the building and office equipment. Imagine copiers and printers sensing when they are low on paper or toner and automatically entering a work order or inventory request into CAFM and CMMS systems. Elevators will be able to tell you when they get stuck. HVAC systems will alert you when their filters need changing. And components like pumps would tell you when they start heating up, indicating there is a problem. Even individual lights, outlets, or thermostats could be connected to the Internet of Things and controlled.
  • IT professionals will see distributed computing at the device level help optimize the performance of machines and processes. Infrastructures will enable device-to-device communication, replacing the idea of servers that push information to devices. Instead, devices will be able to communicate with each other. And as a result, traditional systems will morph into cloud-based software. By automating these networks and removing the “middlemen of IT architecture,” the entire infrastructure will be able to self-configure, self-regulate, and suggest efficiency improvements.
  • Plant managers will go beyond lean manufacturing. Consider a plant that stocks to a minimum. Components are constantly traveling across the planet, often arriving within a day. With the Internet of Things, this system extends beyond individual factories to interconnect multiple factories and regions – enabling sensors to automatically trigger ordering and shipping of parts when stocks fall below a certain level.
  • HR managers may embrace predictive analysis to understand expected workloads and skills needed in the future. They can easily make strategic plans that factor in external economic and political trends. Resource plans can be made based on projected internal and external workforce supply. And organizational modeling will be based on information from all enterprise processes – combining data from finance, HR, logistics, supply chain, and sales.

A brave new world

As you can see, the Internet of Things is bringing together information in more useful and creative ways. And we have only scratched the surface. Automation will not avoid the Internet of Things, but rather will be at the heart of it. And benefits – such as increased operational efficiency, lower costs, and higher productivity – are only the start.

Do you have ideas on how your business can be automated with this information? I’d love to read your thoughts below.

 


Lane Leskela

About Lane Leskela

Lane Leskela, global business development director, Finance and Risk, for SAP, is an accomplished enterprise software leader with years of experience in customer advisory, marketing, market research, and business development. He is an expert in risk and compliance management software functions, solution road maps, implementation strategy, and channel partner management.

Tags:

IoT , Awareness

Data Management and Retention Requirements

Irfan Khan

In his annual state of the union speech last month President Barack Obama made a passing reference to the need for the U.S. to train more people in data management to supply the needs of companies. A little later in the speech he talked about how some new, targeted government regulations would benefit honest businesses while rooting out the bad apples. Maybe he was thinking that those newly trained data managers would be able to help companies with the advanced data management techniques his undefined regulations would require.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not against all regulations. And I’m certainly not opposed to giving tuition credits to students wanting to study the art of data management. But, as the politicians like to say, “let’s be perfectly clear”: modern government regulations require IT professionals to implement new data management policies to prove they are in compliance with changes in the law.

For example, in 2006 the European Union issued a directive to communications carriersforcing them to hold on to subscriber usage data for six to 24 months. That’s so the companies can quickly respond to legal authorities who need to access data for criminal investigations. While some operators may already keep the information, it’s often stored offline. In the case of the EU directive, the information must be able to be accessed without delay by authorities armed with a warrant.

The way the EU directive was written means that wire line, wireless, and ISP operators must retain 15 categories of data. And because the time periods vary, the amount of data to be stored is unpredictable. As you can imagine, the EU also imposed some hefty data security demands as well as unique access requirements. For example, some legal authorities may send their warrants by FAX, e-mail, or even letters via the postal service.

Needless to say, the regulations don’t spell out exactly how carriers should implement the data retention policy. They simply need to do so.

It’s not just the EU creating rules affecting corporate data management. Japan is now considering revising its strict data protection policyfor consumers. The U.S. is in a political battle between those that want tighter Internet controls for copyright holders. And many other nations are designing new laws that affect how companies manage their data.

As I’ve argued here before, having a chief data officer would give enterprises a huge competitive advantage by being able to anticipate the impact new regulations would have on an organization’s data management strategy. In fact, it is increasingly paramount for large multinational companies to have a C-level data officer. Without one, the enterprise lacks a critical resource to compete in today’s global markets.

I agree with President Obama. Data management is, indeed, an excellent career choice for young people. After all, companies need smart people who understand its strategic importance and know how to react quickly when the politicians change the rules on data management for business. Again. And again.


Shaily Kumar

About Shaily Kumar

Shailendra has been on a quest to help organisations make money out of data and has generated an incremental value of over one billion dollars through analytics and cognitive processes. With a global experience of more than two decades, Shailendra has worked with a myriad of Corporations, Consulting Services and Software Companies in various industries like Retail, Telecommunications, Financial Services and Travel - to help them realise incremental value hidden in zettabytes of data. He has published multiple articles in international journals about Analytics and Cognitive Solutions; and recently published “Making Money out of Data” which showcases five business stories from various industries on how successful companies make millions of dollars in incremental value using analytics. Prior to joining SAP, Shailendra was Partner / Analytics & Cognitive Leader, Asia at IBM where he drove the cognitive business across Asia. Before joining IBM, he was the Managing Director and Analytics Lead at Accenture delivering value to its clients across Australia and New Zealand. Coming from the industry, Shailendra held key Executive positions driving analytics at Woolworths and Coles in the past. Please feel to connect on: Linkedin: http://linkedin.com/in/shaily Twitter: https://twitter.com/meisshaily

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Awareness

Data Management and Retention Requirements

Irfan Khan

In his annual state of the union speech last month President Barack Obama made a passing reference to the need for the U.S. to train more people in data management to supply the needs of companies. A little later in the speech he talked about how some new, targeted government regulations would benefit honest businesses while rooting out the bad apples. Maybe he was thinking that those newly trained data managers would be able to help companies with the advanced data management techniques his undefined regulations would require.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not against all regulations. And I’m certainly not opposed to giving tuition credits to students wanting to study the art of data management. But, as the politicians like to say, “let’s be perfectly clear”: modern government regulations require IT professionals to implement new data management policies to prove they are in compliance with changes in the law.

For example, in 2006 the European Union issued a directive to communications carriersforcing them to hold on to subscriber usage data for six to 24 months. That’s so the companies can quickly respond to legal authorities who need to access data for criminal investigations. While some operators may already keep the information, it’s often stored offline. In the case of the EU directive, the information must be able to be accessed without delay by authorities armed with a warrant.

The way the EU directive was written means that wire line, wireless, and ISP operators must retain 15 categories of data. And because the time periods vary, the amount of data to be stored is unpredictable. As you can imagine, the EU also imposed some hefty data security demands as well as unique access requirements. For example, some legal authorities may send their warrants by FAX, e-mail, or even letters via the postal service.

Needless to say, the regulations don’t spell out exactly how carriers should implement the data retention policy. They simply need to do so.

It’s not just the EU creating rules affecting corporate data management. Japan is now considering revising its strict data protection policyfor consumers. The U.S. is in a political battle between those that want tighter Internet controls for copyright holders. And many other nations are designing new laws that affect how companies manage their data.

As I’ve argued here before, having a chief data officer would give enterprises a huge competitive advantage by being able to anticipate the impact new regulations would have on an organization’s data management strategy. In fact, it is increasingly paramount for large multinational companies to have a C-level data officer. Without one, the enterprise lacks a critical resource to compete in today’s global markets.

I agree with President Obama. Data management is, indeed, an excellent career choice for young people. After all, companies need smart people who understand its strategic importance and know how to react quickly when the politicians change the rules on data management for business. Again. And again.


Tags:

Awareness

Data Management and Retention Requirements

Irfan Khan

In his annual state of the union speech last month President Barack Obama made a passing reference to the need for the U.S. to train more people in data management to supply the needs of companies. A little later in the speech he talked about how some new, targeted government regulations would benefit honest businesses while rooting out the bad apples. Maybe he was thinking that those newly trained data managers would be able to help companies with the advanced data management techniques his undefined regulations would require.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not against all regulations. And I’m certainly not opposed to giving tuition credits to students wanting to study the art of data management. But, as the politicians like to say, “let’s be perfectly clear”: modern government regulations require IT professionals to implement new data management policies to prove they are in compliance with changes in the law.

For example, in 2006 the European Union issued a directive to communications carriersforcing them to hold on to subscriber usage data for six to 24 months. That’s so the companies can quickly respond to legal authorities who need to access data for criminal investigations. While some operators may already keep the information, it’s often stored offline. In the case of the EU directive, the information must be able to be accessed without delay by authorities armed with a warrant.

The way the EU directive was written means that wire line, wireless, and ISP operators must retain 15 categories of data. And because the time periods vary, the amount of data to be stored is unpredictable. As you can imagine, the EU also imposed some hefty data security demands as well as unique access requirements. For example, some legal authorities may send their warrants by FAX, e-mail, or even letters via the postal service.

Needless to say, the regulations don’t spell out exactly how carriers should implement the data retention policy. They simply need to do so.

It’s not just the EU creating rules affecting corporate data management. Japan is now considering revising its strict data protection policyfor consumers. The U.S. is in a political battle between those that want tighter Internet controls for copyright holders. And many other nations are designing new laws that affect how companies manage their data.

As I’ve argued here before, having a chief data officer would give enterprises a huge competitive advantage by being able to anticipate the impact new regulations would have on an organization’s data management strategy. In fact, it is increasingly paramount for large multinational companies to have a C-level data officer. Without one, the enterprise lacks a critical resource to compete in today’s global markets.

I agree with President Obama. Data management is, indeed, an excellent career choice for young people. After all, companies need smart people who understand its strategic importance and know how to react quickly when the politicians change the rules on data management for business. Again. And again.


Tags:

Awareness

Data Management and Retention Requirements

Irfan Khan

In his annual state of the union speech last month President Barack Obama made a passing reference to the need for the U.S. to train more people in data management to supply the needs of companies. A little later in the speech he talked about how some new, targeted government regulations would benefit honest businesses while rooting out the bad apples. Maybe he was thinking that those newly trained data managers would be able to help companies with the advanced data management techniques his undefined regulations would require.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not against all regulations. And I’m certainly not opposed to giving tuition credits to students wanting to study the art of data management. But, as the politicians like to say, “let’s be perfectly clear”: modern government regulations require IT professionals to implement new data management policies to prove they are in compliance with changes in the law.

For example, in 2006 the European Union issued a directive to communications carriersforcing them to hold on to subscriber usage data for six to 24 months. That’s so the companies can quickly respond to legal authorities who need to access data for criminal investigations. While some operators may already keep the information, it’s often stored offline. In the case of the EU directive, the information must be able to be accessed without delay by authorities armed with a warrant.

The way the EU directive was written means that wire line, wireless, and ISP operators must retain 15 categories of data. And because the time periods vary, the amount of data to be stored is unpredictable. As you can imagine, the EU also imposed some hefty data security demands as well as unique access requirements. For example, some legal authorities may send their warrants by FAX, e-mail, or even letters via the postal service.

Needless to say, the regulations don’t spell out exactly how carriers should implement the data retention policy. They simply need to do so.

It’s not just the EU creating rules affecting corporate data management. Japan is now considering revising its strict data protection policyfor consumers. The U.S. is in a political battle between those that want tighter Internet controls for copyright holders. And many other nations are designing new laws that affect how companies manage their data.

As I’ve argued here before, having a chief data officer would give enterprises a huge competitive advantage by being able to anticipate the impact new regulations would have on an organization’s data management strategy. In fact, it is increasingly paramount for large multinational companies to have a C-level data officer. Without one, the enterprise lacks a critical resource to compete in today’s global markets.

I agree with President Obama. Data management is, indeed, an excellent career choice for young people. After all, companies need smart people who understand its strategic importance and know how to react quickly when the politicians change the rules on data management for business. Again. And again.


David Parrish

About David Parrish

David Parrish is the senior global director of Industrial Machinery & Components Solutions Marketing for SAP. Before joining SAP, he held various product and industry marketing positions with J.D. Edwards, PeopleSoft, and QAD going back to 1999.

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Awareness

Data Management and Retention Requirements

Irfan Khan

In his annual state of the union speech last month President Barack Obama made a passing reference to the need for the U.S. to train more people in data management to supply the needs of companies. A little later in the speech he talked about how some new, targeted government regulations would benefit honest businesses while rooting out the bad apples. Maybe he was thinking that those newly trained data managers would be able to help companies with the advanced data management techniques his undefined regulations would require.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not against all regulations. And I’m certainly not opposed to giving tuition credits to students wanting to study the art of data management. But, as the politicians like to say, “let’s be perfectly clear”: modern government regulations require IT professionals to implement new data management policies to prove they are in compliance with changes in the law.

For example, in 2006 the European Union issued a directive to communications carriersforcing them to hold on to subscriber usage data for six to 24 months. That’s so the companies can quickly respond to legal authorities who need to access data for criminal investigations. While some operators may already keep the information, it’s often stored offline. In the case of the EU directive, the information must be able to be accessed without delay by authorities armed with a warrant.

The way the EU directive was written means that wire line, wireless, and ISP operators must retain 15 categories of data. And because the time periods vary, the amount of data to be stored is unpredictable. As you can imagine, the EU also imposed some hefty data security demands as well as unique access requirements. For example, some legal authorities may send their warrants by FAX, e-mail, or even letters via the postal service.

Needless to say, the regulations don’t spell out exactly how carriers should implement the data retention policy. They simply need to do so.

It’s not just the EU creating rules affecting corporate data management. Japan is now considering revising its strict data protection policyfor consumers. The U.S. is in a political battle between those that want tighter Internet controls for copyright holders. And many other nations are designing new laws that affect how companies manage their data.

As I’ve argued here before, having a chief data officer would give enterprises a huge competitive advantage by being able to anticipate the impact new regulations would have on an organization’s data management strategy. In fact, it is increasingly paramount for large multinational companies to have a C-level data officer. Without one, the enterprise lacks a critical resource to compete in today’s global markets.

I agree with President Obama. Data management is, indeed, an excellent career choice for young people. After all, companies need smart people who understand its strategic importance and know how to react quickly when the politicians change the rules on data management for business. Again. And again.


Ralf Kern

About Ralf Kern

Ralf Kern is the Global Vice President, Business Unit Retail, at SAP, responsible for the future direction of SAP’s solution and global Go-to-Market strategy for Omnicommerce Retail, leading them into today’s digital reality.

Tags:

Awareness

Data Management and Retention Requirements

Irfan Khan

In his annual state of the union speech last month President Barack Obama made a passing reference to the need for the U.S. to train more people in data management to supply the needs of companies. A little later in the speech he talked about how some new, targeted government regulations would benefit honest businesses while rooting out the bad apples. Maybe he was thinking that those newly trained data managers would be able to help companies with the advanced data management techniques his undefined regulations would require.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not against all regulations. And I’m certainly not opposed to giving tuition credits to students wanting to study the art of data management. But, as the politicians like to say, “let’s be perfectly clear”: modern government regulations require IT professionals to implement new data management policies to prove they are in compliance with changes in the law.

For example, in 2006 the European Union issued a directive to communications carriersforcing them to hold on to subscriber usage data for six to 24 months. That’s so the companies can quickly respond to legal authorities who need to access data for criminal investigations. While some operators may already keep the information, it’s often stored offline. In the case of the EU directive, the information must be able to be accessed without delay by authorities armed with a warrant.

The way the EU directive was written means that wire line, wireless, and ISP operators must retain 15 categories of data. And because the time periods vary, the amount of data to be stored is unpredictable. As you can imagine, the EU also imposed some hefty data security demands as well as unique access requirements. For example, some legal authorities may send their warrants by FAX, e-mail, or even letters via the postal service.

Needless to say, the regulations don’t spell out exactly how carriers should implement the data retention policy. They simply need to do so.

It’s not just the EU creating rules affecting corporate data management. Japan is now considering revising its strict data protection policyfor consumers. The U.S. is in a political battle between those that want tighter Internet controls for copyright holders. And many other nations are designing new laws that affect how companies manage their data.

As I’ve argued here before, having a chief data officer would give enterprises a huge competitive advantage by being able to anticipate the impact new regulations would have on an organization’s data management strategy. In fact, it is increasingly paramount for large multinational companies to have a C-level data officer. Without one, the enterprise lacks a critical resource to compete in today’s global markets.

I agree with President Obama. Data management is, indeed, an excellent career choice for young people. After all, companies need smart people who understand its strategic importance and know how to react quickly when the politicians change the rules on data management for business. Again. And again.


About Andre Smith

Andre Smith is an Internet, marketing, and e-commerce specialist with several years of experience in the industry. He has watched as the world of online business has grown and adapted to new technologies, and he has made it his mission to help keep businesses informed and up to date.

Tags:

Awareness

Data Management and Retention Requirements

Irfan Khan

In his annual state of the union speech last month President Barack Obama made a passing reference to the need for the U.S. to train more people in data management to supply the needs of companies. A little later in the speech he talked about how some new, targeted government regulations would benefit honest businesses while rooting out the bad apples. Maybe he was thinking that those newly trained data managers would be able to help companies with the advanced data management techniques his undefined regulations would require.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not against all regulations. And I’m certainly not opposed to giving tuition credits to students wanting to study the art of data management. But, as the politicians like to say, “let’s be perfectly clear”: modern government regulations require IT professionals to implement new data management policies to prove they are in compliance with changes in the law.

For example, in 2006 the European Union issued a directive to communications carriersforcing them to hold on to subscriber usage data for six to 24 months. That’s so the companies can quickly respond to legal authorities who need to access data for criminal investigations. While some operators may already keep the information, it’s often stored offline. In the case of the EU directive, the information must be able to be accessed without delay by authorities armed with a warrant.

The way the EU directive was written means that wire line, wireless, and ISP operators must retain 15 categories of data. And because the time periods vary, the amount of data to be stored is unpredictable. As you can imagine, the EU also imposed some hefty data security demands as well as unique access requirements. For example, some legal authorities may send their warrants by FAX, e-mail, or even letters via the postal service.

Needless to say, the regulations don’t spell out exactly how carriers should implement the data retention policy. They simply need to do so.

It’s not just the EU creating rules affecting corporate data management. Japan is now considering revising its strict data protection policyfor consumers. The U.S. is in a political battle between those that want tighter Internet controls for copyright holders. And many other nations are designing new laws that affect how companies manage their data.

As I’ve argued here before, having a chief data officer would give enterprises a huge competitive advantage by being able to anticipate the impact new regulations would have on an organization’s data management strategy. In fact, it is increasingly paramount for large multinational companies to have a C-level data officer. Without one, the enterprise lacks a critical resource to compete in today’s global markets.

I agree with President Obama. Data management is, indeed, an excellent career choice for young people. After all, companies need smart people who understand its strategic importance and know how to react quickly when the politicians change the rules on data management for business. Again. And again.


About Paul Dearlove

Paul Dearlove is General Manager - Retail, SAP ANZ based in Sydney. As a former professional athlete, Paul has a keen focus on high performance and believes there are many skills that can be transferred to the corporate environment.

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Awareness

Data Management and Retention Requirements

Irfan Khan

In his annual state of the union speech last month President Barack Obama made a passing reference to the need for the U.S. to train more people in data management to supply the needs of companies. A little later in the speech he talked about how some new, targeted government regulations would benefit honest businesses while rooting out the bad apples. Maybe he was thinking that those newly trained data managers would be able to help companies with the advanced data management techniques his undefined regulations would require.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not against all regulations. And I’m certainly not opposed to giving tuition credits to students wanting to study the art of data management. But, as the politicians like to say, “let’s be perfectly clear”: modern government regulations require IT professionals to implement new data management policies to prove they are in compliance with changes in the law.

For example, in 2006 the European Union issued a directive to communications carriersforcing them to hold on to subscriber usage data for six to 24 months. That’s so the companies can quickly respond to legal authorities who need to access data for criminal investigations. While some operators may already keep the information, it’s often stored offline. In the case of the EU directive, the information must be able to be accessed without delay by authorities armed with a warrant.

The way the EU directive was written means that wire line, wireless, and ISP operators must retain 15 categories of data. And because the time periods vary, the amount of data to be stored is unpredictable. As you can imagine, the EU also imposed some hefty data security demands as well as unique access requirements. For example, some legal authorities may send their warrants by FAX, e-mail, or even letters via the postal service.

Needless to say, the regulations don’t spell out exactly how carriers should implement the data retention policy. They simply need to do so.

It’s not just the EU creating rules affecting corporate data management. Japan is now considering revising its strict data protection policyfor consumers. The U.S. is in a political battle between those that want tighter Internet controls for copyright holders. And many other nations are designing new laws that affect how companies manage their data.

As I’ve argued here before, having a chief data officer would give enterprises a huge competitive advantage by being able to anticipate the impact new regulations would have on an organization’s data management strategy. In fact, it is increasingly paramount for large multinational companies to have a C-level data officer. Without one, the enterprise lacks a critical resource to compete in today’s global markets.

I agree with President Obama. Data management is, indeed, an excellent career choice for young people. After all, companies need smart people who understand its strategic importance and know how to react quickly when the politicians change the rules on data management for business. Again. And again.


Marina Simonians

About Marina Simonians

Marina Simonians is the Head of Global ISV GTM Strategy at SAP responsible for building new global ISV software driven initiatives for Big Data, AI/ML, Advanced analytics and IoT. With a passion for ecosystems she believes partnerships are most critical success factor in today’s software-driven market.

Tags:

Awareness

Data Management and Retention Requirements

Irfan Khan

In his annual state of the union speech last month President Barack Obama made a passing reference to the need for the U.S. to train more people in data management to supply the needs of companies. A little later in the speech he talked about how some new, targeted government regulations would benefit honest businesses while rooting out the bad apples. Maybe he was thinking that those newly trained data managers would be able to help companies with the advanced data management techniques his undefined regulations would require.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not against all regulations. And I’m certainly not opposed to giving tuition credits to students wanting to study the art of data management. But, as the politicians like to say, “let’s be perfectly clear”: modern government regulations require IT professionals to implement new data management policies to prove they are in compliance with changes in the law.

For example, in 2006 the European Union issued a directive to communications carriersforcing them to hold on to subscriber usage data for six to 24 months. That’s so the companies can quickly respond to legal authorities who need to access data for criminal investigations. While some operators may already keep the information, it’s often stored offline. In the case of the EU directive, the information must be able to be accessed without delay by authorities armed with a warrant.

The way the EU directive was written means that wire line, wireless, and ISP operators must retain 15 categories of data. And because the time periods vary, the amount of data to be stored is unpredictable. As you can imagine, the EU also imposed some hefty data security demands as well as unique access requirements. For example, some legal authorities may send their warrants by FAX, e-mail, or even letters via the postal service.

Needless to say, the regulations don’t spell out exactly how carriers should implement the data retention policy. They simply need to do so.

It’s not just the EU creating rules affecting corporate data management. Japan is now considering revising its strict data protection policyfor consumers. The U.S. is in a political battle between those that want tighter Internet controls for copyright holders. And many other nations are designing new laws that affect how companies manage their data.

As I’ve argued here before, having a chief data officer would give enterprises a huge competitive advantage by being able to anticipate the impact new regulations would have on an organization’s data management strategy. In fact, it is increasingly paramount for large multinational companies to have a C-level data officer. Without one, the enterprise lacks a critical resource to compete in today’s global markets.

I agree with President Obama. Data management is, indeed, an excellent career choice for young people. After all, companies need smart people who understand its strategic importance and know how to react quickly when the politicians change the rules on data management for business. Again. And again.


Jennifer Horowitz

About Jennifer Horowitz

Jennifer Horowitz is a journalist with over 15 years of experience working in the technology, financial, hospitality, real estate, healthcare, manufacturing, not for profit, and retail sectors. She specializes in the field of analytics, offering management consulting serving global clients from midsize to large-scale organizations. Within the field of analytics, she helps higher-level organizations define their metrics strategies, create concepts, define problems, conduct analysis, problem solve, and execute.

Tags:

Awareness

Data Management and Retention Requirements

Irfan Khan

In his annual state of the union speech last month President Barack Obama made a passing reference to the need for the U.S. to train more people in data management to supply the needs of companies. A little later in the speech he talked about how some new, targeted government regulations would benefit honest businesses while rooting out the bad apples. Maybe he was thinking that those newly trained data managers would be able to help companies with the advanced data management techniques his undefined regulations would require.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not against all regulations. And I’m certainly not opposed to giving tuition credits to students wanting to study the art of data management. But, as the politicians like to say, “let’s be perfectly clear”: modern government regulations require IT professionals to implement new data management policies to prove they are in compliance with changes in the law.

For example, in 2006 the European Union issued a directive to communications carriersforcing them to hold on to subscriber usage data for six to 24 months. That’s so the companies can quickly respond to legal authorities who need to access data for criminal investigations. While some operators may already keep the information, it’s often stored offline. In the case of the EU directive, the information must be able to be accessed without delay by authorities armed with a warrant.

The way the EU directive was written means that wire line, wireless, and ISP operators must retain 15 categories of data. And because the time periods vary, the amount of data to be stored is unpredictable. As you can imagine, the EU also imposed some hefty data security demands as well as unique access requirements. For example, some legal authorities may send their warrants by FAX, e-mail, or even letters via the postal service.

Needless to say, the regulations don’t spell out exactly how carriers should implement the data retention policy. They simply need to do so.

It’s not just the EU creating rules affecting corporate data management. Japan is now considering revising its strict data protection policyfor consumers. The U.S. is in a political battle between those that want tighter Internet controls for copyright holders. And many other nations are designing new laws that affect how companies manage their data.

As I’ve argued here before, having a chief data officer would give enterprises a huge competitive advantage by being able to anticipate the impact new regulations would have on an organization’s data management strategy. In fact, it is increasingly paramount for large multinational companies to have a C-level data officer. Without one, the enterprise lacks a critical resource to compete in today’s global markets.

I agree with President Obama. Data management is, indeed, an excellent career choice for young people. After all, companies need smart people who understand its strategic importance and know how to react quickly when the politicians change the rules on data management for business. Again. And again.


Lane Leskela

About Lane Leskela

Lane Leskela, global business development director, Finance and Risk, for SAP, is an accomplished enterprise software leader with years of experience in customer advisory, marketing, market research, and business development. He is an expert in risk and compliance management software functions, solution road maps, implementation strategy, and channel partner management.

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Awareness

Hack the CIO

By Thomas Saueressig, Timo Elliott, Sam Yen, and Bennett Voyles

For nerds, the weeks right before finals are a Cinderella moment. Suddenly they’re stars. Pocket protectors are fashionable; people find their jokes a whole lot funnier; Dungeons & Dragons sounds cool.

Many CIOs are enjoying this kind of moment now, as companies everywhere face the business equivalent of a final exam for a vital class they have managed to mostly avoid so far: digital transformation.

But as always, there is a limit to nerdy magic. No matter how helpful CIOs try to be, their classmates still won’t pass if they don’t learn the material. With IT increasingly central to every business—from the customer experience to the offering to the business model itself—we all need to start thinking like CIOs.

Pass the digital transformation exam, and you probably have a bright future ahead. A recent SAP-Oxford Economics study of 3,100 organizations in a variety of industries across 17 countries found that the companies that have taken the lead in digital transformation earn higher profits and revenues and have more competitive differentiation than their peers. They also expect 23% more revenue growth from their digital initiatives over the next two years—an estimate 2.5 to 4 times larger than the average company’s.

But the market is grading on a steep curve: this same SAP-Oxford study found that only 3% have completed some degree of digital transformation across their organization. Other surveys also suggest that most companies won’t be graduating anytime soon: in one recent survey of 450 heads of digital transformation for enterprises in the United States, United Kingdom, France, and Germany by technology company Couchbase, 90% agreed that most digital projects fail to meet expectations and deliver only incremental improvements. Worse: over half (54%) believe that organizations that don’t succeed with their transformation project will fail or be absorbed by a savvier competitor within four years.

Companies that are making the grade understand that unlike earlier technical advances, digital transformation doesn’t just support the business, it’s the future of the business. That’s why 60% of digital leading companies have entrusted the leadership of their transformation to their CIO, and that’s why experts say businesspeople must do more than have a vague understanding of the technology. They must also master a way of thinking and looking at business challenges that is unfamiliar to most people outside the IT department.

In other words, if you don’t think like a CIO yet, now is a very good time to learn.

However, given that you probably don’t have a spare 15 years to learn what your CIO knows, we asked the experts what makes CIO thinking distinctive. Here are the top eight mind hacks.

1. Think in Systems

A lot of businesspeople are used to seeing their organization as a series of loosely joined silos. But in the world of digital business, everything is part of a larger system.

CIOs have known for a long time that smart processes win. Whether they were installing enterprise resource planning systems or working with the business to imagine the customer’s journey, they always had to think in holistic ways that crossed traditional departmental, functional, and operational boundaries.

Unlike other business leaders, CIOs spend their careers looking across systems. Why did our supply chain go down? How can we support this new business initiative beyond a single department or function? Now supported by end-to-end process methodologies such as design thinking, good CIOs have developed a way of looking at the company that can lead to radical simplifications that can reduce cost and improve performance at the same time.

They are also used to thinking beyond temporal boundaries. “This idea that the power of technology doubles every two years means that as you’re planning ahead you can’t think in terms of a linear process, you have to think in terms of huge jumps,” says Jay Ferro, CIO of TransPerfect, a New York–based global translation firm.

No wonder the SAP-Oxford transformation study found that one of the values transformational leaders shared was a tendency to look beyond silos and view the digital transformation as a company-wide initiative.

This will come in handy because in digital transformation, not only do business processes evolve but the company’s entire value proposition changes, says Jeanne Ross, principal research scientist at the Center for Information Systems Research at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). “It either already has or it’s going to, because digital technologies make things possible that weren’t possible before,” she explains.

2. Work in Diverse Teams

When it comes to large projects, CIOs have always needed input from a diverse collection of businesspeople to be successful. The best have developed ways to convince and cajole reluctant participants to come to the table. They seek out technology enthusiasts in the business and those who are respected by their peers to help build passion and commitment among the halfhearted.

Digital transformation amps up the urgency for building diverse teams even further. “A small, focused group simply won’t have the same breadth of perspective as a team that includes a salesperson and a service person and a development person, as well as an IT person,” says Ross.

At Lenovo, the global technology giant, many of these cross-functional teams become so used to working together that it’s hard to tell where each member originally belonged: “You can’t tell who is business or IT; you can’t tell who is product, IT, or design,” says the company’s CIO, Arthur Hu.

One interesting corollary of this trend toward broader teamwork is that talent is a priority among digital leaders: they spend more on training their employees and partners than ordinary companies, as well as on hiring the people they need, according to the SAP-Oxford Economics survey. They’re also already being rewarded for their faith in their teams: 71% of leaders say that their successful digital transformation has made it easier for them to attract and retain talent, and 64% say that their employees are now more engaged than they were before the transformation.

3. Become a Consultant

Good CIOs have long needed to be internal consultants to the business. Ever since technology moved out of the glasshouse and onto employees’ desks, CIOs have not only needed a deep understanding of the goals of a given project but also to make sure that the project didn’t stray from those goals, even after the businesspeople who had ordered the project went back to their day jobs. “Businesspeople didn’t really need to get into the details of what IT was really doing,” recalls Ferro. “They just had a set of demands and said, ‘Hey, IT, go do that.’”

Now software has become so integral to the business that nobody can afford to walk away. Businesspeople must join the ranks of the IT consultants.

But that was then. Now software has become so integral to the business that nobody can afford to walk away. Businesspeople must join the ranks of the IT consultants. “If you’re building a house, you don’t just disappear for six months and come back and go, ‘Oh, it looks pretty good,’” says Ferro. “You’re on that work site constantly and all of a sudden you’re looking at something, going, ‘Well, that looked really good on the blueprint, not sure it makes sense in reality. Let’s move that over six feet.’ Or, ‘I don’t know if I like that anymore.’ It’s really not much different in application development or for IT or technical projects, where on paper it looked really good and three weeks in, in that second sprint, you’re going, ‘Oh, now that I look at it, that’s really stupid.’”

4. Learn Horizontal Leadership

CIOs have always needed the ability to educate and influence other leaders that they don’t directly control. For major IT projects to be successful, they need other leaders to contribute budget, time, and resources from multiple areas of the business.

It’s a kind of horizontal leadership that will become critical for businesspeople to acquire in digital transformation. “The leadership role becomes one much more of coaching others across the organization—encouraging people to be creative, making sure everybody knows how to use data well,” Ross says.

In this team-based environment, having all the answers becomes less important. “It used to be that the best business executives and leaders had the best answers. Today that is no longer the case,” observes Gary Cokins, a technology consultant who focuses on analytics-based performance management. “Increasingly, it’s the executives and leaders who ask the best questions. There is too much volatility and uncertainty for them to rely on their intuition or past experiences.”

Many experts expect this trend to continue as the confluence of automation and data keeps chipping away at the organizational pyramid. “Hierarchical, command-and-control leadership will become obsolete,” says Edward Hess, professor of business administration and Batten executive-in-residence at the Darden School of Business at the University of Virginia. “Flatter, distributive leadership via teams will become the dominant structure.”

5. Understand Process Design

When business processes were simpler, IT could analyze the process and improve it without input from the business. But today many processes are triggered on the fly by the customer, making a seamless customer experience more difficult to build without the benefit of a larger, multifunctional team. In a highly digitalized organization like Amazon, which releases thousands of new software programs each year, IT can no longer do it all.

While businesspeople aren’t expected to start coding, their involvement in process design is crucial. One of the techniques that many organizations have adopted to help IT and businesspeople visualize business processes together is design thinking (for more on design thinking techniques, see “A Cult of Creation“).

Customers aren’t the only ones who benefit from better processes. Among the 100 companies the SAP-Oxford Economics researchers have identified as digital leaders, two-thirds say that they are making their employees’ lives easier by eliminating process roadblocks that interfere with their ability to do their jobs. Ninety percent of leaders surveyed expect to see value from these projects in the next two years alone.

6. Learn to Keep Learning

The ability to learn and keep learning has been a part of IT from the start. Since the first mainframes in the 1950s, technologists have understood that they need to keep reinventing themselves and their skills to adapt to the changes around them.

Now that’s starting to become part of other job descriptions too. Many companies are investing in teaching their employees new digital skills. One South American auto products company, for example, has created a custom-education institute that trained 20,000 employees and partner-employees in 2016. In addition to training current staff, many leading digital companies are also hiring new employees and creating new roles, such as a chief robotics officer, to support their digital transformation efforts.

Nicolas van Zeebroeck, professor of information systems and digital business innovation at the Solvay Brussels School of Economics and Management at the Free University of Brussels, says that he expects the ability to learn quickly will remain crucial. “If I had to think of one critical skill,” he explains, “I would have to say it’s the ability to learn and keep learning—the ability to challenge the status quo and question what you take for granted.”

7. Fail Smarter

Traditionally, CIOs tended to be good at thinking through tests that would allow the company to experiment with new technology without risking the entire network.

This is another unfamiliar skill that smart managers are trying to pick up. “There’s a lot of trial and error in the best companies right now,” notes MIT’s Ross. But there’s a catch, she adds. “Most companies aren’t designed for trial and error—they’re trying to avoid an error,” she says.

To learn how to do it better, take your lead from IT, where many people have already learned to work in small, innovative teams that use agile development principles, advises Ross.

For example, business managers must learn how to think in terms of a minimum viable product: build a simple version of what you have in mind, test it, and if it works start building. You don’t build the whole thing at once anymore.… It’s really important to build things incrementally,” Ross says.

Flexibility and the ability to capitalize on accidental discoveries during experimentation are more important than having a concrete project plan, says Ross. At Spotify, the music service, and CarMax, the used-car retailer, change is driven not from the center but from small teams that have developed something new. “The thing you have to get comfortable with is not having the formalized plan that we would have traditionally relied on, because as soon as you insist on that, you limit your ability to keep learning,” Ross warns.

8. Understand the True Cost—and Speed—of Data

Gut instincts have never had much to do with being a CIO; now they should have less to do with being an ordinary manager as well, as data becomes more important.

As part of that calculation, businesspeople must have the ability to analyze the value of the data that they seek. “You’ll need to apply a pinch of knowledge salt to your data,” advises Solvay’s van Zeebroeck. “What really matters is the ability not just to tap into data but to see what is behind the data. Is it a fair representation? Is it impartial?”

Increasingly, businesspeople will need to do their analysis in real time, just as CIOs have always had to manage live systems and processes. Moving toward real-time reports and away from paper-based decisions increases accuracy and effectiveness—and leaves less time for long meetings and PowerPoint presentations (let us all rejoice).

Not Every CIO Is Ready

Of course, not all CIOs are ready for these changes. Just as high school has a lot of false positives—genius nerds who turn out to be merely nearsighted—so there are many CIOs who aren’t good role models for transformation.

Success as a CIO these days requires more than delivering near-perfect uptime, says Lenovo’s Hu. You need to be able to understand the business as well. Some CIOs simply don’t have all the business skills that are needed to succeed in the transformation. Others lack the internal clout: a 2016 KPMG study found that only 34% of CIOs report directly to the CEO.

This lack of a strategic perspective is holding back digital transformation at many organizations. They approach digital transformation as a cool, one-off project: we’re going to put this new mobile app in place and we’re done. But that’s not a systematic approach; it’s an island of innovation that doesn’t join up with the other islands of innovation. In the longer term, this kind of development creates more problems than it fixes.

Such organizations are not building in the capacity for change; they’re trying to get away with just doing it once rather than thinking about how they’re going to use digitalization as a means to constantly experiment and become a better company over the long term.

As a result, in some companies, the most interesting tech developments are happening despite IT, not because of it. “There’s an alarming digital divide within many companies. Marketers are developing nimble software to give customers an engaging, personalized experience, while IT departments remain focused on the legacy infrastructure. The front and back ends aren’t working together, resulting in appealing web sites and apps that don’t quite deliver,” writes George Colony, founder, chairman, and CEO of Forrester Research, in the MIT Sloan Management Review.

Thanks to cloud computing and easier development tools, many departments are developing on their own, without IT’s support. These days, anybody with a credit card can do it.

Traditionally, IT departments looked askance at these kinds of do-it-yourself shadow IT programs, but that’s changing. Ferro, for one, says that it’s better to look at those teams not as rogue groups but as people who are trying to help. “It’s less about ‘Hey, something’s escaped,’ and more about ‘No, we just actually grew our capacity and grew our ability to innovate,’” he explains.

“I don’t like the term ‘shadow IT,’” agrees Lenovo’s Hu. “I think it’s an artifact of a very traditional CIO team. If you think of it as shadow IT, you’re out of step with reality,” he says.

The reality today is that a company needs both a strong IT department and strong digital capacities outside its IT department. If the relationship is good, the CIO and IT become valuable allies in helping businesspeople add digital capabilities without disrupting or duplicating existing IT infrastructure.

If a company already has strong digital capacities, it should be able to move forward quickly, according to Ross. But many companies are still playing catch-up and aren’t even ready to begin transforming, as the SAP-Oxford Economics survey shows.

For enterprises where business and IT are unable to get their collective act together, Ross predicts that the next few years will be rough. “I think these companies ought to panic,” she says. D!


About the Authors

Thomas Saueressig is Chief Information Officer at SAP.

Timo Elliott is an Innovation Evangelist at SAP.

Sam Yen is Chief Design Officer at SAP and Managing Director of SAP Labs.

Bennett Voyles is a Berlin-based business writer.

Read more thought provoking articles in the latest issue of the Digitalist Magazine, Executive Quarterly.

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Survey: Four Ways Machine Learning Will Disrupt Your Business

Dan Wellers and Dirk Jendroska

We are entering the era of the machine learning enterprise, in which this subset of artificial intelligence (AI) capabilities will revolutionize operating models, shake up staffing methods, upend business models, and potentially alter the nature of competition itself. The adoption of machine learning capabilities will be limited only by an organization’s ability to change – but not every company will be willing or able to make such a radical shift.

Very soon, the difference between the haves and the have-nots of machine learning will become clear. “The disruption over the next three to five years will be massive,” says Cliff Justice, principal in KPMG’s Innovation and Enterprise Solutions team. Companies hanging onto their legacy processes will struggle to compete with machine learning enterprises able to compete with a fraction of the resources and entirely new value propositions.

For those seeking to be on the right side of the disruption, a new survey, conducted by SAP and the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU), offers a closer look at organizations we’ve identified as the Fast Learners of machine learning: those that are already seeing benefits from their implementations.

Machine learning is unlike traditional programmed software. Machine learning software actually gets better – autonomously and continuously – at executing tasks and business processes. This creates opportunities for deeper insight, non-linear growth, and levels of innovation previously unseen.

Given that, it’s not surprising that machine learning has evolved from hype to have-to-have for the enterprise in seemingly record time. According to the SAP/EIU survey, more than two-thirds of respondents (68%) are already experimenting with it. What’s more, many of these organizations are seeing significantly improved performance across the breadth of their operations as a result, and some are aiming to remake their businesses on the back of these singular, new capabilities.

So, what makes machine learning so disruptive? Based on our analysis of the survey data and our own research, we see four primary reasons:

1. It’s probabilistic, not programmed

Machine learning uses sophisticated algorithms to enable computers to “learn” from large amounts of data and take action based on data analysis rather than being explicitly programmed to do something. Put simply, the machine can learn from experience; coded software does not. “It operates more like a human does in terms of how it formulates its conclusions,” says Justice.

That means that machine learning will provide more than just a one-time improvement in process and productivity; those improvements will continue over time, remaking business processes and potentially creating new business models along the way.

2. It creates exponential efficiency

When companies integrate machine learning into business processes, they not only increase efficiency, they are able to scale up without a corresponding increase in overhead. If you get 5,000 loan applications one month and 20,000 the next month, it’s not a problem, says Sudir Jha, head of product management and strategy for Infosys; the machines can handle it.

3. It frees up capital – financial and human

Because machine learning can be used to automate any repetitive task, it enables companies to redeploy resources to areas that make the organization more competitive, says Justice. It also frees up the employees within an organization to perform higher-value, more rewarding work. That leads to reduced turnover and higher employee satisfaction. And studies show that happier employees lead to higher customer satisfaction and better business results.

4. It creates new opportunities

AI and machine learning can offer richer insight, deeper knowledge, and predictions that would not be possible otherwise. Machine learning can enable not only new processes, but entirely new business models or value propositions for customers – “opportunities that would not be possible with just human intelligence,” says Justice. “AI impacts the business model in a much more disruptive way than cloud or any other disruption we’ve seen in our lifetimes.”

Machine learning systems alone, however, will not transform the enterprise. The singular opportunities enabled by these capabilities will only occur for companies that dedicate themselves to making machine learning part of a larger digital transformation strategy. The results of the SAP/EIU survey explain the makeup of the evolving machine learning enterprise. We’ve identified key traits important to the success of these machine-learning leaders that can serve as a template for others as well as an overview of the outcomes they’re already seeing from their efforts.

Learn more and download the full study here.  

 


About Dan Wellers

Dan Wellers is founder and leader of Digital Futures at SAP, a strategic insights and thought leadership discipline that explores how digital technologies drive exponential change in business and society.

Dirk Jendroska

About Dirk Jendroska

Dr. Dirk Jendroska is Head of Strategy and Operations Machine Learning at SAP. He supports the vision of SAP Leonardo Machine Learning to enable the intelligent enterprise by making enterprise applications intelligent. He leads a team working on machine learning strategy, marketing and communications.