Internet of Things lacks leadership skills

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An increasing number of organisations are lacking in necessary leadership skills and understanding to drive growth opportunities from the Internet of Things (IoT), according to research.

The latest Gartner survey found that more than 40% of IT and business leaders worldwide expect the IoT to reduce costs and drive revenue growth during the next three years, rising to 60% in five years.

Another 25% of those surveyed have created business leadership strategies for the IoT, either in the form of a single organisational unit or multiple business units taking ownership of separate IoT efforts.

"The survey confirmed that the IoT is very immature, and many organisations have only just started experimenting with it," said Nick Jones, Gartner’s VP and distinguished analyst.

"Only a small minority have deployed solutions in a production environment. However, the falling costs of networking and processing mean that there are few economic inhibitors to adding sensing and communications to products costing as little as a few tens of dollars."

The research also found that many respondents felt that the senior levels of their organisations don’t yet have a good understanding of the potential impact of the IoT.

For example, board members’ understanding of the IoT was rated as particularly weak in government, education, banking and insurance, while their understanding of the communications and services industries was above-average.

Steve Kleynhans, Gartner’s research VP, said: "Organisations need executives and staff to understand the potential of the IoT if they’re going to invest in it."

"While a single leader for the IoT is not essential, leadership and vision are important, even in the form of several leaders from different business units. We expect that over the next three years, more organisations will establish clear leadership, and more will recognise the value of some form of an IoT centre of excellence because of the need to master a wide range of new technologies and skills."

 

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