How to Un-complicate the Corporate Cloud in the IoT

Making sure complexities do not impact the performance of the Internet of Things will ensure the rewards of a more connected future.
Published: February 17, 2019

The corporate adoption of the Internet of Things (IoT) has exploded throughout the past few years, and this trend does not appear to show any signs of slowing down, with IDC predicting that the IoT will soon reach $772 billion. The big reason behind this investment is that IoT solutions have a seemingly unlimited ability to revolutionize business processes through a variety of tools that can help companies solve issues involving predictive maintenance, real-time inventory tracking and fleet management, among others.

This huge potential means that IoT solutions are likely to dominate IT budgets in the coming years, with 96 percent of companies hoping to increase their spending on IT within the next three years. However, ensuring that these smart offerings will deliver on their promises will be a daunting task, and getting the perfect software experience that today’s companies expect will also be difficult, for the simple fact that the applications that drive the IoT concept depend on a complex and increasingly integrated cloud.

Organizations are already struggling to master the increasing complexity in their enterprise cloud environments, but the introduction of IoT tools is poised to extend that challenge a hundredfold. After all, intelligent solutions are powered by incredibly complex applications, installed in dynamic structures and scattered across multiple clouds. These applications rely, in turn, on the vast ecosystems of sensors, devices, gateways and platforms that need to function perfectly. If a problem occurs in the performance of any component of the Internet of Things ecosystem, it will become increasingly difficult for IT teams to find the source of the error and resolve it in an agile way.

To prove the size of this challenge, a recent Dynatrace survey found that 69 percent of chief information officers predict that the Internet of Things will become one of the top performance-management demands on their companies. Organizations simply cannot fail to consider this issue, since the consequences of performance problems on IoT ecosystems can go far beyond small drawbacks. For example, a problem between connected sensors and supply chain systems can result in losses for a retailer. Clearly, this type of scenario is of concern to CIOs, with 74 percent fearing that IoT performance issues will hinder their operations and significantly damage revenues.

Before receiving the potential rewards this technology has to offer, companies must first address the complexity that they add to the cloud environment, in order to avoid failures and improve the results of the technology used. The complexity of the cloud is inevitable, but organizations must implement measures to ensure that their smart grids are able to identify and resolve the demands and failures as quickly as possible. This is the only way to improve the overall performance of your installations and ultimately provide the perfect software experiences that are now a business imperative.

With the scale and complexity of the Internet of Things, it is impossible for IT personnel to monitor and correct performance issues manually. Traditional monitoring approaches, platform-specific tools and built-in solutions cannot provide complete visibility of IoT ecosystems on a Web scale, and are thus of little help to those who wish to provide seamless IoT software experiences. Therefore, organizations need to take a new approach, using automation to monitor end-to-end IT stacks and leverage artificial intelligence to unravel insights that simplify managing enterprise complexity.

Automating the process in this way provides IT teams with a real-time situational awareness of the broad structure of IoT sensors, devices, gateways, applications and platforms that are powering their digital capabilities. This makes it much easier to identify and fix the inevitable issues that will arise before they can affect service performance, despite the growing complexity that accompanies the IoT.

Staying ahead and ensuring that the complexities of the corporate cloud do not impact the performance of Internet of Things ecosystems can help to ensure that companies can truly receive the rewards that a more connected future has to offer. As operations, systems and processes become more integrated into networks, organizations can create better software experiences than ever before. Ensuring that these IoT ecosystems have improved performance will enable them to empower their users, who will continue to interact with companies in new ways, with more autonomy and control over their experiences.

Dave Anderson is a digital performance specialist at Dynatrace.