IIoT Technology In Supply Chain Operations

Jun 23, 2022
4 min read

The Industrial Internet of Things or IIoT connects a variety of supply chain linkages to ensure that everyone involved in product creation and delivery has consistency, transparency, speed, and scalability. However, even though there are now even more layers in the supply chain across all industries due to globalisation and the Internet bringing us all closer together, organisations still face severe issues and hurdles in meeting these expectations. For example, shortages of medicines, crucial health products, and other items and temporary trade restrictions exposed their flaws. These trends and the trade war between the United States and China have caused global supply chain disruptions.

In this blog article, we will look at how IIoT functions in the supply chain and why it can help businesses significantly reduce supply chain barriers while enhancing product quality.

What is IIoT?

The use of smart sensors and actuators to improve manufacturing and industrial processes is known as the industrial Internet of things (IIoT). IIoT, also known as the industrial Internet or Industry 4.0, takes advantage of the data machines have produced in industrial settings for years using the power of smart machines and real-time analytics. Smart machines are better than people at gathering and processing data in real-time. Still, they are also better at transmitting crucial information that can be utilised to make business choices faster and more correctly, according to the IIoT's guiding principle. IoT focuses on home appliance management, which improves user comfort while conserving resources like power. The Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) focuses on vital systems, including health care, aircraft, manufacturing machinery automation, linking machines and people, and data analytics.

How Is It Different from IoT?

IoT focuses on home appliance management, which improves user comfort while conserving resources like power. On the other hand, the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) focuses on vital systems, including health care, aircraft, manufacturing machinery automation, linking machines and people, and data analytics. The Industrial Internet of Things, or IIoT, is a framework in which several equipment or devices are linked and synchronized using software tools. Industrial IoT devices span from large industrial robots to small environmental sensors.

How Can IIoT Help Supply Chain Operations?

The supply chain has constantly been developing over the years, with the introduction of advanced technology such as sensors and artificial intelligence (AI) to keep the supply chain compact. Reduced inventory meant using equipment and raw materials efficiently and cost-effectively. However, when the COVID-19 pandemic struck, it created global supply chain disruptions as we had never seen before. Smart sensors and artificial intelligence (AI) can help build a more resilient system and repair many of the supply chain flaws exposed by the pandemic.

The worldwide IIoT market is expected to reach $1.11 trillion by 2028, according to Grand View Research, which implies the manufacturing industry should be able to analyze billions of actions daily in real-time and assure consistent and accurate data processing and association among machines and sensors. IIoT offers manufacturers options that save time, money, and resources, from predictive maintenance and better machine uptime to offering end-to-end insight into the supply chain. Manufacturers may get visibility inside, outdoors, and on the road with an IoT strategy.

Enhanced Asset Tracking & Inventory Control

Sensor utilization is reaching new heights thanks to the IIoT, especially regarding asset monitoring and determining where assets are in the supply chain at any given time. If a container has an asset tracker, a client may know if it is still on a ship or has arrived at a port. However, knowing the location of a single asset is insufficient when a product requires, say, 20 components before it can be manufactured. IIoT sensors enable a consolidated picture of all data flowing from these distinct containers, which is very useful for factories that manage many products, components, and raw materials. As asset trackers and sensors become more affordable, they are more widely used. Data management becomes increasingly critical as the number of sensors grows.

Globalization

Physical supply chains are now under strain since they must quickly reach diverse parts of the world to meet varying needs. Businesses are disorganized and lack the adequate procedures that bind the chain together due to these complications, generating delays. In addition, different nations operate differently in terms of customs and the law, making it more challenging to get commodities. From the moment a product is produced until it leaves the final provider, the IIoT may make information about it more accessible. These stages include device verification and authentication to guarantee quick and secure transmission.

Predictive Maintenance

Predictive maintenance is a proactive response to the common problems caused by equipment downtime. This is in contrast to the traditional reactive strategy, which may be much more damaging to firms. Businesses that use predictive maintenance approaches don't waste time on routine maintenance that isn't always necessary or well-timed. When problems are little and insignificant, they are easier to fix. Repetitive and needless expenditures are cut, and attention is focused just where and when it is required. There are further advantages to leveraging the Internet of Things to provide predictive maintenance in this fashion. This data-driven approach creates a clear audit trail, allowing you to understand what has occurred and needs to occur. This might be very important if you need to file a claim with your insurance or warranty company.

Warehouse Automation

Automating inventory transportation into, within, and out of warehouses to consumers with little human intervention is known as warehouse automation. A corporation can reduce labour-intensive tasks such as repetitive physical labour and manual data input and analysis as part of an automation initiative. Warehouse automation enables robots or cobots to collaborate with warehouse workers. People can take on more intricate, low-level jobs that benefit the firm since they are connected to the Internet and configured to conduct various duties.

Bottom Line

Smart sensors and artificial intelligence (AI) can help build a more resilient system and repair several supply chain flaws exposed by the pandemic. The Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) has already significantly influenced the manufacturing industry and the supply chain as a whole, enabling new capabilities and more intelligent, predictive, and proactive workflows that lead to increased efficiency. Companies are also leveraging significant technological advances that have significantly reduced the barrier to adopting IIoT solutions. These trends include improvements to IIoT platform functionality and ease of use, simplified development of IIoT applications through access to APIs and established communications protocols, and lower costs of sensors and data storage.