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Implementing Internet of Things

The PwC Internet of Things (IoT) survey showed *70% of participants had live or developing IoT projects, suggesting IoT is one of the top-rated industry technologies embraced by consumers with an already existing presence across the majority of markets.

Last year’s Digital Manufacturing Week in Liverpool, saw over 3,000 industry experts from all over the world share new innovations, processes and ideas, including Thomas Kendall, IoT expert from the Virtual Engineering Centre. Thomas presented at the Digital Transformation Solutions Theatre to discuss the key considerations businesses need to take when implementing IoT technologies into their business models. He discussed what adoption looks like, the benefits of adoption, and demystified the perceived barriers through an introductory roadmap.

IoT functionality is a cornerstone for enabling other advanced technologies including, big data analytics, augmented intelligence, cyber security and cloud computing. IoT technologies are here, examples that can be seen today, providing real published benefits as businesses are encouraged to evolve.

Unlike several digital technologies which have specific use cases, IoT can be implemented in a vast array of situations throughout company structures; on machines, in supply chains, health and safety, environmental impact monitoring, automated systems and so on.

Adopting IoT technologies does not necessarily refer to the adoption of assets, but could also mean adopting IoT plans. Introducing IoT for high and low level solutions – like business orientated long-term goals or asset specific integrations – enable us to work in tangent in order to reap the full rewards.

For example, manufacturers in the Liverpool City Region looking to use IoT technologies to improve the efficiency of a supply chain (high level), require sensors for monitoring of local stock and production lines (low level).

IoT Horizon Ltd, a North West-based company, reported that 95% of IoT adopters achieved tangible benefits. Commonly reported benefits include increased efficiencies and outputs, increased customer experience, improved transparency and new business opportunities whilst providing reduced costs and operational time required.

Currently multinational enterprises (MNE’s) or even larger organisations are six times more likely to adopt IoT Technologies than SMEs. Microsoft’s Azure IoT signals report suggests that barriers for SME IoT adoption includes a lack of knowledge, technical challenges and lack of budget.

However, according to PWC’s 2019 IoT survey, 93% of executives implementing IoT claim the benefits outweigh the risks.

Implementing IoT technologies into any business may seem daunting, but by following the below five-stage roadmap, chances of success can be achieved.

  • Identify business goals
  • Develop IoT use cases
  • IoT vision and roadmap development
  • IoT pilot project
  • Implement and integrate IoT initiative

Not every IoT implementation and project is guaranteed to be a success, but there are some common reasons for failure including security issues, internet connectivity, failing to complete implementation and finally doing nothing – deciding to not implement IoT may result in businesses losing out on a competitive advantage and being left behind by its competitors.

IoT technologies was just one area of focus, amongst a plethora of innovations, at last year’s Digital Manufacturing Week in Liverpool, which reinforced Liverpool City Region’s pioneering role in the global digital manufacturing industry.

The Virtual Engineering Centre is leading on 3 innovative projects (fully funded by the European Regional Development Fund) which aim to support SMEs across Liverpool City Region, Warrington and Cheshire to develop their digital strategy, creating a roadmap to smooth digital adoption and implementation whilst becoming better connected to the digital supply chain for a strengthened ecosystem.

To find out how the Virtual Engineering Centre can support your business on your digital journey through the development of digital roadmaps, accessing our unique expertise and offering bespoke support and solutions, contact us via or call 01925 864 854.

PwC Survey: *this survey of approximately 1,000 US business executives in July 2019.