IoT won’t reach its full potential unless the technology can be simplified and made more secure and, yes, more skilled workers can be found to implement it.
The skills gap in IoT has been a well-known for years, something exemplified in a new Microsoft research study, IoT Signals.
It also uncovered a need to reduce complexity and boost security in IoT.
The company surveyed 3,000 IoT decision makers in enterprises in six countries including the U.S. On the positive side, the survey found that businesses adopting IoT believe they will see a 30% return on investment in their IoT in two years. Fully 85% of the surveyed group said they have at least one IoT project in either the learning, proof of concept, purchase or use phase.
Nearly all companies (97%) said they have security concerns in adopting IoT, with 43% most concerned with network security and 38% most concerned with device tracking and management and endpoint security.
Regarding the skills gap, only 33% of IoT adopters said they feel their companies have adequate workers and resources to see their projects through to full realization. Almost half (47%) said there aren’t enough available skilled workers.
And regarding complexity, 38% of adopters cited complexity and technical challenges of using Iot as a barrier to further IoT adoption.
One stark finding was that 30% of IoT projects fail in the proof of concept stage, often because implementing the project was expensive or the bottom-line benefit wasn’t clear.
IDC has forecast there will be 41 billion connected IoT devices by 2025. Microsoft cited Starbucks, Chevron, Buhler AG, Steelcase and Thyssenkrupp as IoT customers. Microsoft itself is investing $5 billion in IoT and intelligent edge technologies by 2022 and relies on an ecosystem of more than 10,000 IoT and intelligence edge partners to assist its customers.