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Record number of enterprises integrating IoT devices - Zebra

15 Oct 2019
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Enterprise solutions provider Zebra Technologies has announced the results of its third annual Intelligent Enterprise Index which indicates a record 61% of enterprises worldwide are on the path to becoming “intelligent,” compared to only 49% in 2018.

This global survey analyses the extent to which companies connect the physical and digital worlds to drive innovation through real-time guidance, data-powered environments and collaborative mobile workflows.

Their “Intelligent Enterprise” Index scores are calculated using 11 criteria that include Internet of Things (IoT) vision, adoption, data management, intelligent analysis and more.

Based on these criteria and driven by an overwhelming pressure to improve the customer experience, retail organisations have gained the most momentum in the last 12 months, graduating from the bottom of the 2018 vertical Index rankings to nearly the top of the 2019 list, second only to Healthcare.

The number of companies defined as truly “intelligent enterprises” by achieving a score of 75 points or greater on the Index has also risen year over year.

Seventeen percent of organisations with at least 250 employees crossed this threshold in 2019 versus only 11% in 2018.

Interestingly, 37% of surveyed small to medium-sized businesses (SMBs) with 50-249 employees scored 75 points or greater on the Index, indicating SMBs with an IoT vision are in many cases more “intelligent” than large enterprises.

“When we launched the Intelligent Enterprise Index three years ago, many enterprises were trying to understand where and how IoT solutions could be best applied within their unique business environments,” says Zebra Technologies global futurist Drew Ehlers.

“We now see more urgency to improve operational visibility and facilitate the delivery of actionable intelligence all the way to the edge of the enterprise.

He adds, “I believe that is why enterprises are now demonstrating a much greater commitment to executing their IoT plans and why we’ll likely see a surge in investments over the next few years.”

Zebra Technologies Australia and New Zealand regional director Tom Christodoulou says, “With the continued adoption of mobility and IoT, the edge of enterprise operations is becoming increasingly connected.

"This unprecedented, growing level of connectivity is generating vast amounts of actionable data about processes and assets that can be leveraged to transform workflows to improve business performance and outcomes.”

KEY FINDINGS

  • The pace of IoT adoption is picking up, leading to increasingly greater intelligence levels. The cumulative Intelligent Enterprise Index score continues to grow as more companies move from exploratory to deployment phases of their journeys, with the 2019 score topping out at 61.5 points. This represents a nearly 6-point increase from 2018, driven largely by the increased “intelligence” gains of retail and transportation & logistics (T&L) organisations. It is also a +9-point gain from 2017, the first year the Index was conducted. Further, 74% of APAC organisations have an IOT vision with plans to execute it, of which 55% have already implemented while up to 43% are planning to implement it within the next 1-3 years.
     
  • Continued growth in IoT solutions and other data-driven technology platform investments. In 2019, the average global enterprise spend was $6.4 million, representing a 39% year-over-year increase. Eighty-six percent of enterprises expect this number to grow in the next 1-2 years, with over half of respondents expecting to increase their investments by 21-50+%. Up to 92% of APAC organisations expect their investments in IOT and mobility to increase over the next 1-2 years.
     
  • Intelligence-driven solution deployments have broadened quite significantly. Forty-six percent of study respondents are currently implementing their IoT solutions on a company-wide level, an increase from 38% in 2018. Another 32% expect to soon move toward regional deployments.
     
  • With security a top priority, enterprises are committing more resources to continuous data system monitoring. Sixty-two (62)% of enterprises are now constantly monitoring their IoT security to ensure system integrity and data privacy. That is a 4-percentage point gain year-over-year and a 13-percentage point increase from 2017. At that time, only 49% had a constant security monitoring protocol with 47% periodically monitoring their systems.
    • Up to 70% of APAC organisations are constantly monitoring their IOT security to ensure that their system integrity and privacy are not compromised.
       
  • Enterprises are shifting to a single partner “intelligent” solution ecosystem. Nearly half (49%) of study respondents indicate they now rely on a single strategic partner to manage their entire “intelligence” solution, including components and services provided by third parties.
     
  • Surveyed SMBs score higher on the Index than large companies (64.5 points vs 61.5 points). This higher score is based on findings such as SMB respondents indicating their enterprises are more likely to have an IoT vision and are executing on the plan (69% vs 62%).

SURVEY BACKGROUND AND METHODOLOGY

  • The online survey was fielded from August 12 – September 18, 2019, across healthcare, manufacturing, retail and transportation and logistics industries.
     
  • In total, 950 IT decision-makers from nine countries were interviewed, including the U.S., U.K./Great Britain, France, Germany, Mexico, Brazil, China, India, and Japan. Each of their organisations had at least 250 employees and annual revenue of $5 million. The data captured from SMBs focused on companies with between 50-249 employees.
     
  • Eleven metrics were used to understand where companies are on the path to becoming an Intelligent Enterprise, including IoT Vision, Business Engagement, Technology Solution Partner, Adoption Plan, Change Management Plan, Point of use Application, Security & Standards, Lifetime Plan, Architecture/Infrastructure, Data Plan and Intelligent Analysis.
     
  • The framework of an Intelligent Enterprise is based on technology solutions that integrate cloud computing, mobility, and the Internet of Things (IoT) to automatically “sense” information from enterprise assets. Operational data from these assets, including status, location, utilisation, or preferences, is then “analysed” to provide actionable insights, which can then be mobilized to the right person at the right time so they can be “acted” upon to drive better, more timely decisions by users anywhere, at any time.