The Internet of Things, or IoT, is a continuously growing environment made up of connected devices, sensors, and other endpoints. Each device is network enabled and can transmit information to other machines or people which unearths the question, how will IoT impact Unified Communications? Unified Communications has historically provided real-time communications between people allowing them to collaborate efficiently. With the emergence of IoT, we are starting to see the communication streams expand from not just people to people, but into communication between people and machines.
Businesses are looking to leverage IoT to streamline processes, services and more. Much as smart phones and the internet have transformed business-customer interaction, IoT takes the relationship to another level. A marriage between Unified Communications and IoT can create countless amounts of efficiencies in the way organizations operate.
An example of this, at a basic level, would be a heart monitor that can send telemetry information via SMS or another messaging platform to alert a nurse that a patient is having a critical issue. An advanced use case could be that the patient’s heart rate data is combined with other medical information and analyzed. The message then routes to different staff members based on the outcome of the analysis.
IoT will also evolve the contact center by creating proactive, and predictive, customer service. IoT objects could potentially sense problems and alert the manufacturer without the customer even being aware. For example, a refrigerator could sense that the thermostat is not functioning properly, and place an automated call to schedule it for service. There are added benefits for self-service capabilities as well. Today we see printers that can order ink from the manufacturer when it senses it is running low. The ink ships with proper installation instructions, so the client receives and can install the new ink without ever needing to place the order.
The possibilities are endless and large organizations are showing the potential of what voice and IoT can do. Amazon is demonstrating its faith in the future of home IoT and how people will interact with technology with every Amazon Echo advertisement asking Alexa to perform a task. Soon, anything that can be connected will be connected.
In a recent study, Cisco surveyed more than 1,800 IT and business decision-makers in the U.S., U.K., and India whose companies in a variety of industries implemented or completed an IoT effort. 73 percent of respondents used data from IoT projects to improve their business and, according to their research, the top three benefits of their IoT initiatives were: enhanced customer satisfaction (70 percent), more efficient operations (67 percent), and quality improvements (66 percent).
Whether developing IoT connected products or implementing UCaaS efforts to improve communication and collaboration, the Cisco survey respondents found implementing an IoT initiative required experienced outside expertise. Sixty percent indicated that the efforts were more difficult to complete than anyone expected. The more successful efforts took advantage of experienced partners who smoothed out the learning curve and helped pave the way.
Firms, such as TetraVX, specialize in enabling interoperability between cloud services and applications for organizations of all sizes. Implementing a customized Unified Communications solution that incorporates IoT doesn’t have to be complex or time-consuming. Our expertise enables us to cut through the clutter and deliver a streamlined, on-schedule deployment. TetraVX knows what it takes to define your UC vision, align it with your strategic business objectives, and deploy it efficiently.
For years, people have fantasized about IoT applications and improved communications via the internet. The long-envisioned possibilities are rapidly being rolled out in various industries. To look at possible applications and foster a transformation for your business, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.