36 (131) 2018
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Resilience and the Internet of Things

by David Mudd, business development director for IoT, BSI Group, and Aneta Sawicka, Product Certification Sales Manager, BSI Group Polska
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The Internet of Things (IoT) presents transformational opportunities for manufacturers.

It enables new customer experiences, business models and improved performance right across the supply chain. However, it also poses huge risks – data theft, denial or failure of services, and physical security breaches.

Implementing IoT while ensuring that your organisation survives and prospers over the long term is a major challenge facing the manufacturing sector. How should firms deal with the transformation to Industry 4.0 from the old ways of making things?

The key lies in organisational resilience – the ability to adapt to change. It means equipping people and improving systems and processes to build their awareness, agility and reactions – the vital skills needed for a dynamic, digital age. Organisational resilience reaches beyond risk management; it is about being innovative, constantly learning and improving to overcome adversity and spring forward to seize new opportunities, while also protecting the organisation and balancing the risks.

Manufacturing leaders tend to think of themselves as progressive and flexible, adapting quickly and adopting new ideas to maintain a competitive edge. Yet are they consistent in managing opportunity versus risk? Do they always thoroughly validate our assumptions about whether a certain technology is suitable for our own or our customers’ needs? If manufacturers do get it right, how can they avoid becoming complacent in a world that refuses to stop changing – indeed, where change is accelerating?

In search of resilience

Achieving resilience can be challenging for any sector – not least in manufacturing. With the development of sophisticated smart technologies gathering pace, organisations cannot afford to be complacent. However, resilience is as much about the people and the process as the technology.

It’s reassuring to know that a recent report from the Business Continuity Institute found that professionals are becoming increasingly aware of the benefits that business continuity can bring to their businesses. But business continuity plans alone will not help those organisations to build resilience – a more holistic approach is required, one that’s focused on understanding all vulnerabilities and strengths. For example, do your products still meet the needs of your customer? What are the key risks within your supply chain? Is the information you’re handling secure and effective?

Triumphing with new technologies

To help manufacturers achieve organisational resilience, BSI has developed the world’s first index report and benchmarking tool that can show firms just how resilient they are. A survey asks respondents to rate their performance across 16 elements of resilience. Given that – according to research firm Gartner – there are expected to be 20.4 billion IoT devices connected by 2020, it’s vital that manufacturers understand the impacts and benefits of new technologies to be resilient.

IoT has the potential to deliver huge value to manufacturers. It has endless applications, from predictive maintenance of equipment to supply chain management, improving environmental performance and remote sensing.

From security concerns to interoperability challenges, BSI has been working collaboratively with a range of stakeholders from product manufacturers to network providers and government agencies to develop best practice that will be relevant today and in the future. Industry 4.0 does not stand alone; manufacturing takes place in factories, and the factories of the future will be built using Building Information Modelling (BIM). Owners/operators of factories built using BIM will have at their disposal massive databases containing graphic and non-graphic information about every aspect of their buildings, allowing them to coordinate maintenance programmes for the factories. Linking BIM to IoT will also require scenario modelling to assess the impact of certain events on the existing assets and employee safety.

Looking to the future

Being ‘smart’ is about more than just adopting the latest technology. It’s about optimising strategy in light of the current and future technology landscape and integrating it through a controlled approach, balancing opportunity and risk and matching people, process and products to desired outcomes. Organisational resilience is a strategic imperative for any organisation that wishes to prosper in today’s digital world. It is not a one-off exercise, but achieved over time and for the long-term. Mastering organisational resilience requires the adoption of excellent habits and best practice to deliver business improvement by building competence and capability across all aspects of an organisation. This allows technology leaders to take measured risks with confidence, making the most of opportunities that present themselves. BSI’s tried and tested approach to organisational resilience helps organisations to harness experience and embrace opportunities of IoT, to pass the test of time.

The IoT is not just a solution for manufacturers. Its applications will be used by local authorities, healthcare providers, and by consumers in their own homes. In Poland we can observe significant progress in this area. According to the Worldwide Semiannual Internet of Things Spending Guide by IDC, in 2014 the value of IoT investments in Poland amounted to $2 billion, this year it will exceed $3.7 billion, and by 2020, IoT expenditure reach 5.4bn by 2020.
Solutions for domestic appliances, consumer electronics, smart home and the automotive sector are the fastest developing segment of Polish IoT market. As a report published by IAB Polska indicates, the greatest development of IoT devices is expected in the area of smart building. Given the position of Poland in terms of the production of consumer electronics and domestic appliances and smart technologies for houses, we expect an increased interest in the BSI’s Kitemark Internet of Things certification scheme.

The Kitemark provides ongoing rigorous and independent assessments to make sure the IoT device functions and communicates as it should, and that it has the appropriate security controls in place. Manufacturers of internet-connected devices will be able to reassure consumers by displaying the Kitemark on their product and in their marketing materials.

Introduced in the UK 115 years ago, the Kitemark has reassured generations of Britons about the safety of objects they come in contact with, from manhole covers to gas boilers, from crash helmets to breathing apparatus. In years to come, it will become as recognisable across Poland as it is in the UK.

If you would like to learn more about Kitemark, IoT & Product Certification visit BSI WEBPAGE

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