The term IoT stands for ‘internet of things’ and is used to describe computing devices that are able to connect to an internet server to provide a certain service. Whether mechanical, digital machines or an object, by connecting to an internet server, they are able to function to their intended role while being able to be controlled remotely.
Created with the use of Unique Identifiers (UIDs), these IoT devices are able to transfer data over a secure network without the need for human interaction.
We will be taking a look at how IoT devices can improve your business and how you too can use these systems to improve and develop your company.
Walking you through the different kinds of Internet of Things devices and their roles, you can decide which devices are best suited for you.
What Kind Of IoT Devices Are In The Workplace?
When it comes to the use of IoT devices, they are three different categories, all with a variety of purposes that can be used within different industries. From consumer devices, industrial devices to enterprise devices, we will be taking a look at the various roles of each of the IoT devices.
A device designed to aid and assist within the home, a consumer device is an item available to the wider public as an improvement on a standard device. Aimed at individuals, rather than businesses, these IoT devices within the home can be seen as Smart TV’s, speakers, toys, wearables. Most frequently seen as health trackers in the form of watches and smart doorbells that connect to our mobile phones. What makes IoT consumer devices different from others, is the ability to use these products manually. Rather than having artificial intelligence that can act alone, these Internet of Things devices is responsive that can also act on our command.
Types of consumer devices include:
- Apple products- iPhone, IPad, MacBook,iPad
- Wii consoles
- Washing machines
- DVD players
- These are all considered as a consumer device as they are for home or personal use only, and need to be connected to the internet most of the time to be used correctly.
Industrial And Enterprise Devices
Industrial and enterprise devices usually come under the same bracket, this is because each product has similar features and are able to be used either as industrial or enterprise.
Typically found within the office or work area, these types of IoT devices can be seen in Smart Meters, commercial security systems, smart air conditioning, lighting, and thermostats. When connected to the internet, these devices can usually run on their own with the use of artificial intelligence to analyze the data received and act accordingly on such information.
The only difference between the two forms is the scale in which they usually work with. Industrial IoT devices usually staying within machines or systems within a factory, and enterprise focussing on retail and commercial buildings that can be used for office spaces.
Examples of industrial devices:
- Smart robotics
- Connected contact lenses
- Activity trackers
- Smart mirror
- Smart lock
Examples of enterprise devices:
- Self-service kiosks
- Portable machines
- Inventory trackers
- Custom terminals- in restaurants, for example.
IoT devices can be used just about anywhere. But, seeing as we are focusing on the office environment, below are some examples of IoT tech that can be used in any workspace.
Examples of IoT Devices For An Office Environment
There are many IoT devices that could be used within the workplace, but to those new with this form of technology, it can be hard to understand why these will help the business.
IoT devices are usually put in place to make the workday perform to a more efficient standard, and a smart lock system will be sure to do just that. This is a piece of technology that will allow building access from any device with a high-quality security backup. This will decrease the chances of any inconveniences happening, such as loss of keys, reducing the chances of a major security risk.
Voice assistants are a massive player in aiding work production. Working alongside artificial intelligence, the assistance can allow a person to record data, itinerary and even conversations through a simple voice-activated system. This tool will avoid anything being written down and lost which is very easily done. Any business meetings or visits will always be remembered and on time too with the voice assistant as it will store the data and give reminders in the build-up to the event, keeping everything proactive and running smoothly.
An internet-connected computer is nothing new to many business spaces. However, the new alternative ‘smart printers’ have created multiple benefits to this once simple device. Instead of needing manual checkups and assistance in maintaining the paper levels or ink in the printer, it can do it itself by alerting someone when there’s an issue or nearing a replenishment stage. In some very clever cases, a smart printer can actually connect itself to inventory levels, and check itself how much ink and paper are left on site, and alert a stock taker when more is needed to be ordered.
Intelligent lighting within the workplace is another piece of technology that will create an efficient workplace as well as an environmentally friendly environment. This is because they can be set to adjust their own light production or even turn themselves off in order to save energy. This is also very helpful in situations such as meetings or video conferences, where the lights will act accordingly to what is happening in the room.
Just like the lighting, having a smart thermostat in the workplace can make it a far greener area, making the office environmentally friendly. The smart device will manage heat in rooms based on temperatures in that current situation, across larger premises. The smart thermostat will lower heat production or air-con when needed, which will massively save on energy bills- as no more energy will be used than what is needed.
There is an array of IoT devices to have within the workplace or at home with just a few described above. With the addition of IoT devices containing their own advantages, helping to improve the efficiency of the business.
Advantages Of IoT In The Workplace
The use of IoT in the workplace can benefit the overall productivity of the workforce and assist in the way in which colleagues can maintain and conduct their workload.
Aiding In Day-To-Day Activities
In the enterprise category, a smart device can aid in completing many different organizational tasks that are to be conducted throughout the day. With devices able to schedule appointments in an available meeting room, these IoT devices can eliminate the need for an assistant or receptionist to conduct this task. This, in turn, saves not just time but can make the working day more efficient, even from this small activity.
Adjusting Systems Accordingly
When the meeting has been organized by the device, the system will then continue to aid in the comfort and productivity of the meeting. Taking away tasks from those present within the room. IoT will control the temperature in correlation to the number of people that have entered the room and adjust the lights at appropriate times. For example, it will dim the lights when it realizes a PowerPoint has been loaded, projected onto the screen.
Efficient work rate
Due to the increase in intelligence of these devices that employees will be using throughout the workday, the work produced will be therefore more effective and to a higher standard.
This is because rather than having to do everything manually, the more tedious tasks can be completed by an IoT device, creating more time to use to complete another, equally as important task.
Creates a smoother running office
If IoT is taking control of the more minor tasks that need to be completed in the office, then there is a reduced chance of important facts being forgotten. When it comes to simpler tasks, such as adjusting the temperature or checking for free rooms, they can be forgotten and ignored, but not anymore! With the use of an IoT device, you can complete every minor task, reducing the risk of mishaps, problems and making the company more professional.
How you can incorporate an IoT device into your business?
It’s easy enough to talk about IoT, but you may be wondering, how can I use one of these devices in a busy office environment? With a wide selection of products available, when looking for the best device for you, here are some of the top responsibilities that you want to be on the lookout for.
Enhance Customer Service Experience
IoT could be used appropriately to inform a department within your business when a customer is experiencing some difficulties and needs help. This would be extremely beneficial as it can rule out the need of the customer having to call customer service, as the IoT would detect the issues early enough.
Management Of Business Productivity
Workers have been reviewing work rates, sales of the month or customer connectivity for a long time, so they can do it with success. However, a device that can communicate with another device, allows for a far deeper productivity review to take place. Rather than simply focussing on KPI’s of the month and how many people visited the business site, the IoT can recall far deeper information.
For example when colleagues need further training, solutions to any issues that the business may not even know about yet, and client satisfaction rates.
Many businesses will probably have a rather high tech security system in place to protect the company, or they believe they do. Sometimes a series of passwords is just not enough to protect the work and files produced and a system with a higher protective rate needs to be put into place.
IoT can produce a security system using facial recognition to access a system or set of files before starting work. This can even be done with voice recognition too. Taking away the need to answer a series of questions or passwords not only saves times, but this form of security is far more reliable and won’t compromise on convenience.
While these are only a few examples of how IoT can benefit the office, it still shows how the devices can become completely compatible with a business’ workday to not only positively increase productivity, but the mood of the workers.
The world of IoT with artificial intelligence is always getting smarter, with devices being able to delve further and further into the software to analyze the information as time goes on.
IoT when added correctly and used to their full capacity, can aid, develop and improve the efficiency and performance of your business. From making an office more environmentally friendly to smaller workloads and reducing your running costs, improve workflow and venue with IoT devices.