Data: the key measure of relevance in a digital revolution

By | 2 minute read | September 22, 2016

leadspace image of data depicting a revolution

Companies have historically managed assets such as property, plants, equipment, inventory, cash, and intellectual property. In today’s digital world, a new type of asset is emerging – data – which companies are reporting, collecting, and analyzing in vast volumes. It’s is becoming a key measure of whether a company will remain relevant through the digital revolution.

The dawn of a new data economy

Data originates from many new sources and is increasingly becoming easier to collect and analyze. Due to the rise in availability and new data-driven insights, more and more is being exchanged within and among companies. This has spawned a new economy built upon using data to generate value through both internal and external means.  IoT devices are one of the driving forces behind the shift to this new economy. As the number of ‘things’ become more instrumented, interconnected, and intelligent, the information they produce will grow exponentially. New approaches and business models will be required. As described later in this section, there are many opportunities for cost containment and value attainment with IoT information. These opportunities are driving IoT investments by companies and increasing the number of new players. As the volume increases, the data economy will continue to emerge and enable companies through selling and exchanging information.

Collaboration and visibility remain essential

As IoT enabled products are adopted, access to information from those products is enabling improvements and reducing total cost of ownership. Several supply chain dynamics are becoming common, including: decentralized production, omni-channel approaches, fulfillment by brick and mortar stores, and the utilization of drones and autonomous vehicles. As complex ecosystems rise, collaboration and visibility remain essential. With the emergence of the data economy, if companies are able to develop flexible supply chains, new value chain opportunities can emerge in response to near real-time consumer and consumption data.

Driving business and industry to new heights

Connecting things, then combining device data with other sourcess unveils patterns and trends that would not otherwise be obvious. The decisions made possible in this way have the potential to drive business and industries to new heights. Despite the great strides we have seen in IoT technology and applications, the Internet of Things has much room for growth. Much of the dark and edge data created by the Internet of Things holds great value—if it can be deciphered and put to use. This otherwise discarded information can help us learn about complex IoT systems, but that’s just the beginning. When we combine it with information from other sources, such as weather and news events, we can use the resulting analysis to drive decisions on everything from predictive maintenance to fleet operations to worker safety.

By translating massive amounts of unstructured data into meaningful outputs, IBM Watson IoT helps identify trends, anomalies, probabilities and patterns that otherwise might go unseen. IBM Watson Internet of Things gives enterprises a way to tap into the flood of IoT data, then use it to answer previously unasked questions and make intelligent business decisions.