IoT, or “internet of things,” is becoming much more prevalent in the modern world. We see the advent of household appliances sold with internet connectivity and allowing for the remote monitoring, maintenance and control of your lights, refrigerator and AC system. The consumer market, however, is not where this technology has the most advantages. A new term has surfaced recently, industrial internet of things, or IIoT. IIoT refers to all of the equipment and machinery in the industrial market which is now being developed with internet connectivity. The process of preparing for this new, connected reality will be costly and time consuming for businesses, to say the least. The overwhelming benefits, potential cost savings and increased efficiency of integrating this new technology will be well worth the investment.

The Digital Industrial Economy

IoT is considered the foundation of the digital society by technical leaders. To remain relevant and thrive in this new digital age, organizations must focus on the integration of this technology into every aspect of their operations. This requires the prioritization of IT investments, which in the past were considered only costs. They must now be viewed as assets. Organizations must also reorganize themselves to prepare for the new digital industrial economy, using their IT infrastructure to unify the functions of traditionally separate departments.

Gartner, Inc is the world leading technology and research advising company, helping businesses in every industry to effectively implement technology into their infrastructure. Peter Sondergard, Senior Vice President of Research at Gartner, indicates that 70 % of companies have created cross-functional departments during IoT implementations. This illustrates how technology can consolidate the functions of previously separate organizational units, like research, engineering and product development, resulting in increased efficiency of the entire organization.

The significance of CMMS IoT integration

A key component of the digital industrial economy is computerized maintenance management systems (CMMS). Although these systems have been in use for quite some time, the Internet of Things has revolutionized their value. Originally, a CMMS was nothing more than a glorified database, requiring support persons to document information and generate work orders for business-critical assets. IoT integration has transformed an organization’s CMMS to receive real-time data from assets and automates the process of generating work orders and maintenance requests.

The traditional approach to the maintenance and management of assets required a great deal of human interaction. Support staff would perform periodic inspections of equipment to determine its condition. Periodic preventive maintenance was also performed, such as swapping out perishable parts, often before the asset replacement was even necessary. Regardless of what maintenance procedure was performed, human interaction was always required.

After the integration of IoT assets into a CMMS, the need for periodic inspections is eliminated. This saves organizations not only on the cost of visits by support staff but also on the downtime of the asset during the inspection process. It also eliminates the need for the predictive replacement of parts which are still in working order, as notifications will be sent by the asset itself when a part needs replacement.

The overall benefit of IoT to the efficiency of asset management with a CMMS is incalculable, as it not only makes traditional maintenance routines obsolete but allows for real-time optimization methods specific to your unique business requirements.

The Transformation of Facilities Management

Facilities management is an important function within any organization. IoT technology allows for facilities to be managed based on accurate real-time data rather than human perception and intuition.

IoT makes today’s buildings smarter than ever before

A few ways IoT impacts facilities management every day; Room temperatures are monitored in real-time, along with the physical state of climate control systems, allowing issues to be addressed promptly. Internet-connected trash receptacles can alert cleaning staff when they are full, eliminating the need for unnecessary scheduled inspections. Lighting, power plugs, data and phone connections constantly report their functionality to facilities management.

In the past, maintenance requests were handled reactively, in response either to complaints or to the discovery of issues by staff members. In a smart building using IoT technology, maintenance becomes pro-active, giving staff members the ability to address issues before they cause problems for the users. The actionable insights generated by real-time data collection is also useful in risk-management, giving first responders the information they need to keep people safe and the premises secure.

Facilities management can even utilize mobile devices to continuously monitor the state of their buildings. The ability to receive notifications of important, even emergency situations which arise, ensures the peace of mind for both those responsible for maintaining a facility and those using the facility.

Where to find an IoT-ready CMMS

You now know what IoT technology can do for your organization, and you know that CMMS software was available even before the IoT revolution. If you are looking for a mobile ready CMMS solution that is fully IoT-ready, look no further. Proteus CMMS is a cloud-based, versatile CMMS with the ability to fully integrate your IoT devices. Proteus offers a single access point for facilities and manufacturing management, with fully customizable email and SMS notifications. Proteus CMMS is suitable for a wide range of industries, both large and small. It can provide peace of mind for facilities and manufacturing managers and give executives access to business-critical information, anytime anywhere.

Stay tuned for next week’s post #3 “IIoT and Healthcare” in our 6 part series on the Industrial Internet of Things.