July 28, 2020

Industrial Analytics and IoT: COVID-19 Impact


COVID-19 pandemic has had the world under house-arrest since February 2020. However, many US states, regions, and countries worldwide are now lifting the lockdowns, and the corporate sector will resume activities soon.

That said – the post lockdown way of life will require the use of technology with a renewed approach. Internet of things (IoT) devices and Industrial analytics offer the abundant potential to help industries get used to the new normal.

Industrial Analytics Forcing Companies to Re-Evaluate

According to some experts, IoT and Industrial Analytics may inspire businesses to evaluate the shortcomings of their existing workforce and operations.

Coronavirus lockdown forced people to work remotely. The responsibility now lies with HR representatives to identify and resolve the workforce gap to prevent hindrance in productivity. For example, assume there is a future COVID-19 breakout within the company forcing multiple employees to go in self-isolation. How is the company going to cope with a sudden workforce shortage?

Companies may face other issues such as the workforce not showing up due to temporary discontinuation of local transportation services. Thus, enterprises must rely on smart industrial analytics to proactively plan their reopening strategy.

Industrial analytics can also help vulnerable businesses in reopening during COVID-19. The food and beverage industry is one of the biggest and hardest-hit industries. Tech companies have come up with smart analytics applications for the meatpacking sector.

This will allow the companies to screen their workers and visitors while enforcing sanitation standards and other health-related essential practices for safe operations.

Using IoT in New Ways

The majority of companies use CCTV cameras to maintain secure premises and deter vandalism or theft incidents. Cameras may become a necessity for some businesses to ensure that employees stay compliant with COVID-19 prevention protocols. 

Businesses can use AI and IoT devices such as cameras to remotely view the live feed of their floors on internet-enabled devices from a remote location. For example, Paris transportation officials launched and tested mask-detection software with their cameras as a preventive monitoring measure amidst coronavirus pandemic.

The aim was not to store data, identify, and penalize the non-compliant commuters but to monitor what percentage of the population is wearing a facial mask. This could help the authorities to evaluate, adapt, and execute their preventive measures accordingly.

Offering Alternate Smart Approach

The companies best equipped with IoT and Industrial analytics tools will be able to face the known challenges more efficiently and smartly.

For example, if a business requires to check their employees’ temperature before starting their work. It will either mean that employees get to work earlier than their shift timings or the company end up wasting time after the shift starts. Instead, the company officials can install thermal imaging cameras to capture and monitor the body temperature of every employee and visitor.

Asda, a supermarket chain store, has introduced a ‘virtual queuing’ system to implement social distancing amongst shoppers more effectively. A shopper will use an app to register for a place in the queue and wait in their cars. Once their turn comes, they will get a notification on their phones to proceed to the entrance.

Industrial analytics in such circumstances may also give businesses real-time insight into their consumers’ behavior, products, and services. This will help companies to manage their supply and demand efficiently and effectively.

IoT and Smart Industrial Analytics Are Inevitable

The aspects mentioned above are just the tip of an iceberg. There is a lot more that both industrial analytics and IoT devices can work on both independently and in conjunction with each other.

If you are among the businesses who were either hard-hit by COVID-19 or still speculating whether to return to normal business operations, you can always get experts’ advice. They can help you to deploy IoT and industrial analytics to your advantage.

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