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Will the Internet of Things Deliver?

Investing in extensive planning for building the right IoT infrastructure is well worth the effort.
By Yuval Lavi

IoT Costs and Risks
In the early stages, it's difficult to know what impact the IoT will have on your business. Instead of a structured, top-down approach with management buy-in, rapid prototyping can help you determine the real value of how the new system will be used. It's important in the experimental stages to quickly pilot ideas, try new things and learn from failures.

Even though there are many opportunities to incorporate IoT technology in business work processes, companies need to take a hard look at the integration costs. Systems need to easily share data between customer relationship management (CRM), enterprise resource planning (ERP), and back-end financial and manufacturing systems. In addition, systems need to connect vast networks of sensors, controllers, beacons, smartphones, tablets and other devices.

To ensure that that ROI also continues in the long term, the system needs the ability to continuously define and update business rules based on additional data sources. Likewise, the infrastructure must be flexible to comply with emerging standards, so as to protect personal privacy and prevent hackers from taking over.

Integration platforms provide a more flexible environment that is optimized to manage vendors' technology stacks and all of the data sharing between different vendors' solutions. Various capabilities, including fault-tolerance, elasticity, monitoring and performance management, enable systems to automatically cache transmissions that cannot be sent, and to allocate extra resources to handle sudden peaks in demand. Standard mechanisms for managing data can help companies comply with standards and regulations.

The Internet of Things holds enormous potential, especially when it comes to improving the customer experience. Investing in extensive planning for building the right IoT infrastructure is well worth the effort. With all the potential improvements in customer service and efficiency, it's only a matter of time before IoT standards and best practices make the IoT commonplace and an expected part of doing business.

Yuval Lavi is the VP of technology and innovation at Magic Software.

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