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IoT Transformation: Yes, You Can Do It All (But a Single Vendor Can’t)


Jeff Carlat headshot.pngBy Jeff Carlat
HPE Sr. Director of Solution GTM, System Integrators, Global Strategic Alliances

Businesses come to Internet of Things from many angles and directions. It may be they’re seeing diminishing returns on their IT investments, and they’re looking for ways to get more value out of a refresh. Or they may be under competitive pressure from companies that have already digitized and achieved significant value. But wherever they’re starting from, there inevitably comes a point when their investigation of the IoT runs into a wall of complexity and questions like: Where to start? Where can we get the biggest returns? How do we bridge IT and operational technologies? How do we handle the intersection with other business accelerators, like cloud? And how do we minimize disruption to the production environment?

For many organizations, it all boils down to a couple of questions: Can we really do all this? If so, how?

Simple answer: Yes, you can. And I’ll explain an important part of the “how” in this post.

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There’s a crucial corollary to that answer, though: No single player in the IoT space can do everything. The range of expertise and technologies needed for IoT projects is just too vast for any one vendor to cover, even in specific verticals. It’s a simple truth, but it has profound consequences for how companies structure their IoT initiatives, as well as how vendors organize and shape their offerings, and how the vendor landscape will evolve in the next few years.

In the new world of the industrial IoT, the name of the game is partnership. Vendors that are skilled at forging alliances and creating partner ecosystems will be the ones best positioned to help companies tap into the awesome transformative energy of the IoT. They’re the ones that will prosper in the turbulent IoT market environment and shape its future.

How system integrators ignite value

IIoT-driven partnerships will bridge across more areas of expertise and deliver on a wider range of use cases than you’ve ever seen in the past. At HPE, for example, System Integrators (SIs) are a core part of our ecosystem, and we partner with them up and down the value chain. They range from advisory services providers like Deloitte, PwC and Accenture to business operations firms like Tech Mahindra and Cognizant that can build out the solution on HPE infrastructure, and even actively manage it once it’s in place.

Here’s an example of how it works, at the point where guidance and insight are often needed the most: at the start of an initiative. System integrators with deep industry knowledge and subject matter expertise kick off consultative discussions at the C-Suite level, based around whatever business challenge the customer has identified as a target for the IoT transformation. The SI can help decision-makers to create a business case to justify the transformation and financially calculate the business return that can be expected with a net investment.

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The system integrator can help you create a road map detailing the steps involved in moving from the current state to the desired future state and – most importantly – how that can be achieved without disruption of the production environment. The SI can also conduct a journey workshop to help key players understand the strategic plan and their roles in it.

From there, the same SI or another partner from our network can build out the solution on HPE technology, often augmented with solutions from our operating technology partners, to the proof-of-concept stage. In a manufacturing environment, for instance, the customer might decide to apply the solution on a small portion of a production line for a defined period of time. Once the value is demonstrated, the solution can be extrapolated across the factory, and rapidly scaled across different sites or production lines.

In addition to implementing the solution, in some cases our SIs can manage its day-to-day operation, so that the customer doesn't have to be mired in the ongoing maintenance of the environment.

A partner for the long haul

Of course, HPE’s IoT partner system extends beyond SIs – I mentioned our operational technology partners, a hugely important part of our ecosystem, and there’s also our extensive network of independent software vendors. In upcoming blogs, I’ll be covering some success stories that show how we’ve helped clients and customers leverage the IoT to create massive value with HPE infrastructure in collaboration with our partners.

The partnership mandate is transforming the IoT space, and for many vendors it will result in uncomfortable cultural shifts. For HPE, in contrast, partnering with the best of the best has always been part of our DNA. In fact, it’s one of the three core principles that our company is built on. We’ve demonstrated that commitment over the years in many ways, from our development of open technologies to our support for hybrid IT. It’s a cultural advantage that’s rapidly becoming a competitive advantage in IIoT, and one that will enable us to continue to shape its future.

Learn more about how HPE’s system integrator partners and technology partners can help your business tap into new value via the IIoT.


About the author:Jeff Carlat profile pic.png

Jeff Carlat is Sr. Director of Solution GTM, Strategic Alliances responsible for partnering, innovating and delivering solutions for hybrid IT & cloud, Data Analytics and IoT that deliver new levels of business outcomes for clients of all size.  He provides leadership and collaboration working across the portfolio of HPE strategic System Integrator partners and brings together organic IP and technology with partner technology, consultative and GTM assets providing a simplified approach for customers to transform to the ever changing landscape necessary for ongoing efficiencies and customer service level expectations.

Empowering the Digital Enterprise to be more efficient and innovative through data-driven insights from the Internet of Things (IoT)
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