By Ross Hickey, Founder and CEO of Trinity IoT
Previously, I discussed the importance of device and connectivity management, what it means for a business, and how to deploy solutions that deliver value for your organisation. In this article, the spotlight turns to the benefits of this approach and how it can enhance the operating environment.
In the short-term, device and connectivity help ensure a business can get to market faster with a robust system that does not falter when managing a large deployment of distributed devices. This enables leadership to focus on its core objectives while it can rely on experienced Internet of Things (IoT) partners to do the grunt work. IoT-based management platforms provide businesses with the opportunity to plan ahead to future-proof long-term strategies and turn IoT into a serious competitive advantage.
Nuts and bolts
Some of the other granular benefits of connectivity management include having real-time visibility of the SIM and device estate of the organisation. Companies can then view or control these as needed via a centralised cloud platform.
On a more practical level, companies can troubleshoot devices much more efficiently by having access to the SIM status as well. Is a device not reporting because it is broken? Or is a device not reporting because the SIM has run out of data? Sometimes, a SIM simply needs a top-up. This may sound astoundingly simple, but without remote visibility of a SIM, the only way to conduct the investigation is on-site. On-site investigations are not feasible for most businesses, but especially in the case where assets containing devices and SIMs are widely distributed. Stakes are raised significantly when organisations must work under a strict service level agreement or must pay a hefty call-out fee every time something breaks.
Similarly, benefits of device and connectivity management include improved resource allocation. With a cloud-based management layer in place, companies can carefully monitor the usage of data across multiple networks. Admins can also circumvent bill shock by giving users remote access to their data budgets on a SIM and APN level. Custom triggers and alerts can be set up to notify users about data spend. For example, if a SIM nears its data threshold limit, users can be alerted via a predetermined channel like SMS or email. The SIM can then be suspended, topped up, or blocked, depending on the case.
Enhancing the operational environment
By linking mission-critical data to management, monitoring, and data platforms, device and connectivity management can dynamically change the way a company operates. From automating admin-intensive business processes to managing the core business remotely, this approach has had an immense impact on those organisations that have implemented it.
Businesses have tighter control and visibility over their assets, and their data, and can run at a much larger scale without having to worry about the operational cost of manually maintaining their operations. For example, live access to data not only makes remote monitoring and diagnostics possible, but it opens the opportunity for businesses to change the way they solve problems. As a result, businesses can troubleshoot issues the moment they arise, identify trends, and make data-based decisions all of which reduce operational expenditure – and without ever setting foot on-site.
Real-time remote monitoring also allows companies to make decisions timeously and respond effectively. For instance, if an asset overheats, a trigger notification will alert an operator to act. Or, if an IoT device is stolen, users can view its whereabouts in real-time. From vehicle recovery to food delivery: centring an organisation’s services around a stable, robust cloud infrastructure gives businesses the opportunity to innovate, manage and grow their businesses faster, without the fear of operational ‘speed wobbles.’
A robust infrastructure built on the foundation of cellular IoT could be the next big thing for many businesses in South Africa. But this can only happen if organisations embrace device and connectivity management.