IoT promises new business opportunities as we move into the era of IR 4.0. Almost anything can be connected to the Internet and remotely monitored and controlled. The data we collect can be monetized or used to make better decisions. Thus, this opportunity has become more attractive to companies that want to generate new revenue streams with new products and services.
Thus, should they develop in-house or outsource the IoT projects? What are the issues and challenges to choosing any of these methods? What are the necessary things required to overcome these challenges?
IoT Projects – In-house or Outsource?
There are several factors to consider if you want to choose the in-house direction:
- Talent is critical to ensure one can deliver the objectives with quality and on schedule. The expertise should cover all aspects from Product Manager, System Architect, and IoT Developers (both back-end and front-end).
- Investment – Experienced staff will be able to gauge the amount of time and resources that translate to a suitable investment. Many projects are delayed, and underestimate the total efforts to deliver on schedule and budget because the in-house workforce doesn’t have enough experience to understand the overall scope and complexity. Sometimes in-house product development is simple, manageable, and less costly than outsourcing.
- Complete control of customization – By owning the source code, you can fully control any customization and easily save costs.
The advantages of choosing an outsourcing method are as follows:
- Focus on deliverables rather than the complexity of product development. What matters most is meeting the project objectives and outcomes. Thus, it can utilize the workforce to focus on customer acquisition or improve the overall process.
- Faster to roll out – Vendors or System Integrators have better experience finding and building IoT solutions. Fitting pieces of the IoT jigsaw puzzle can be daunting without prior experience.
- Focus on operations rather than maintaining product roadmap – It’s not the nature of the in-house team to keep updating the product roadmap. It’s manageable to sustain the development of a single product or service. Still, developing and maintaining several products will be expensive, primarily to continuously support human resources with IoT development skills.
Similar Challenges – Customer or Vendor
Whether you are on the customer side building your in-house team or a vendor in building a new or expanding business in IoT, both of you have similar challenges, i.e., talent and tools.
- Talent in IoT – It takes a team to build a good and marketable solution. This team must have the capability to understand the customer’s needs or pain points, the size of the market, able to define the product features, architect the overall system, and skills to do the system integration, hardware, and software development, and finally knows how and where to market it. The technical skills should cover five aspects – hardware, connectivity, platform, applications (including analytics), and security.
- Tools – Hardware design tools can be more expensive than software tools and need bigger space to accommodate the physical materials. Besides the software tools for programming, the team also requires an IoT platform that can be in-house development or partner with another company that offers these services. The advantage of using an existing IoT cloud or on-premise, you can reduce a significant amount of time in onboarding different IoT devices, capturing data, and developing IoT dashboards for visualizations.
Develop an IoT Strategy
As IoT is still in its early stages, it is highly challenging to find good technical people with the right combination of skills willing to help businesses solve their problems with the right solutions. There are plenty of opportunities, but the challenge is attracting people with the right talent.
Many companies are now offering more technical roles, including IoT-focused ones. If you’re looking to fill a vacancy in your organization and have a specialized team already in place, then you need to find a way to make the transition seamless and easy for them. One of the best ways to attract talent is by providing a challenging, engaging, and meaningful opportunity to work on IoT projects. It would be best if you had a clear and concise IoT strategy.
The following steps will help you to create an effective IoT strategy:
Set your IoT Strategy Objectives
- What do you want to achieve from this?
- What’s your vision for IoT?
- Is it simply to make things easier for your employees or revolutionize your business?
It would help if you also considered how to use IoT to achieve your broader goals and strategic objectives.
- For example, you may wish to make your company more efficient by using IoT technology. Or, you may want to improve the efficiency of your production process by implementing IoT.
- Set Your IoT Roadmap – you may be interested in developing new products or services using IoT in a new business area.
It will help you identify the significant changes you plan to implement over the coming months and years.
FAVORIOT has an IoT platform to help you quickly build your IoT products and solutions. The platform will provide the tools required to quickly manage your IoT sensors and display the data on Dashboards. FAVORIOT also provides hands-on IoT training to help you quickly build your IoT team with the right talent to build your IoT products.