Starting a new project can become complex. Especially in the area of the Internet of Things, the Internet of Things, there is often a lack of experience in handling the data, the sensors and the possibilities. Much too quickly one is tempted to daydream and the project takes over.
To reduce the risks of a major IOT project, Forbes has asked its experts from the Forbes Technology Council for advice. Together they defined 16 steps to the successful Internet of Things project, which we will look at here:
1. Plan for the increase in the number of data records received
In the test and planning phase, the operation in practice is often hidden. Especially in an IoT project, the planned data sets can often grow many times over. So plan for your success, not for your concept. With IoT feeds it is often the volume that is overlooked: 50 sensors in a laboratory is not the same as 50,000 in practical use.
2. Design an agile IoT architecture
Especially at the beginning of the project they still have to be extremely agile. It is not known from the beginning how much and what kind of data is sent back by the sensors. Until all uncertainties are clarified and the processes run smoothly, they must keep the architecture agile and the decisions “on the wire”. In IoT projects, despite the high degree of networking and automation, a decision is often still made in real time if anomalies or deviations occur.
3. Setting up monitoring and cyber-hygiene processes
When planning and implementing an Internet of Things project, you must ensure that basic monitoring for IoT assets is also included in the project. Monitoring and curation are among the basic processes here. A cyber-hygiene process should also not be neglected.
4. Defining the decision and application matrix
The clear definition of the end customer’s needs and the determination of decisions are the first steps of a project in the field of the Internet of Things. For this reason, Forbes colleagues always recommend defining the decision and application matrix first and then expanding the various technical levels. This reduces the need for later adjustments and optimizes the collected data.
5. Perfecting the user experience
The user is also the focus of planning for IoT projects. It is therefore important to develop good UX wireframes that allow the developer to work more effectively. Perfecting the user experience is the key to success in an Internet of Things project.
6. Implementation of a procedural framework
Keep your stakeholders up to date at all times during the development process. This requires a well thought-out and flexible control management, which is set up and communicated right at the beginning of the development process. This allows the partners to follow the current iterations of the project at any time and there are no later irritations.
7. Simplify the pilot project
In journalism, there is a statement that also applies to IoT projects: Simple is smart. Make sure that the pilot phase is as clear and simple as possible. The benefits and challenges of the project must be quickly and clearly demonstrated – the processes should be easy to understand.
8. Consider the life cycles of smart devices
An IoT project is not only about the basic questions of sensor technology, but also about the implemented devices. Whether in a Smart City project or in the Smart Home, each component of the system has its own specific requirements. Be it the bureaucracy behind a city-wide decision or the cost hurdle in private households. Life cycles of the devices and components must therefore be included in the planning and communicated at an early stage.
9. Questions make the project more tangible
Questions are always the key to success in an innovation project. Communication with users, IT and partners is a central component not only at the beginning of the project, but throughout its entire duration. Even in an IoT project, the environment must be constantly monitored and evaluated so that problems and opportunities can be better identified.
10. IoT as an Internet of Systems
The Internet of Things consists of more than just sensors. Especially the internal systems such as devices, operating systems and business processes cannot be neglected, as each of them can trigger further actions and reactions that determine the success or failure of a project.
11. A company-wide information management strategy is needed
In such a large project one often gets lost in the mass of tools and information. But to make the IoT project a success, you need to reduce the disparate source and focus on one core tool. This increases the accuracy of the processes and guarantees access to all existing data sets.
12. Monitor customer expectations
Customers and companies do not always agree. With a technology as process-oriented as the Internet of Things, it is therefore important to define the right balance between the customer’s expectations and the possibilities of the system.
13. Design with security in mind
Ensuring end-to-end security in IoT projects should be part of the design from the beginning. IoT edge/IoT hub should be designed as secure as possible. Physical network segmentation and firewall configurations must also be considered.
14. Costs and simplification must be considered in the IoT project
Often a clever solution is developed, but it is not designed for feasibility. Often projects are only prepared for practical use after a successful pilot phase, which unnecessarily eats up time and resources. If attention is paid to simple usability and efficient cost planning right from the start, much more speed can be brought into the project later.
15. Define limits
Make sure you have a plan to convert the data collected by your IoT sensors into useful analyses. This concentration on the essentials and on selected process steps will bring quick success and keep the team motivated. The feed into your own artificial intelligence and secondary use can also be followed up later.
16. Does the project really need IoT?
It is so tempting to introduce new technologies into the business process to proudly report about them. But the first and most important question you need to ask yourself is whether you really need the Internet of Things for your project. Read up on the possibilities of IoT, talk to your partners and find out the added value of an IoT process for your company and your customers.
The complete article by Forbes with even more information can be found here.