Six Tips for ERP Integration with IoT

PostedOn: 2018-01-05 11:48:07

There’s a lot of revenue opportunity for businesses with data streaming in from IoT devices. The only problem is that most of this data goes to waste. 

Recent research from IFS shows that only 16 percent of companies consume IoT data within their ERP systems. That means the majority of businesses haven’t yet integrated IoT with ERP. 

Mixing IoT with ERP isn’t always easy, though. The sheer volume of data coming from IoT devices makes capture and study a sizeable issue. Integrating IoT with ERP is hard, which is part of why so many businesses haven’t done it. 

But integrating the two is possible, and possibly easier than you think. Here are six tips for bringing IoT and ERP together.

  • Get ERP Connected 

The first step is getting your ERP system fully connected to the various IoT devices related to your organization. 

Larger companies must get serious about ensuring their enterprise software streamlines bilateral integration with connected devices or risk losing the digital transformation race to smaller, more nimble companies. 

Enterprise software must make possible two-way communication between ERP and a company’s full range of connected devices, be they programmable logic controllers, temperature or vibration sensors, or entire work cells united through SCADA systems. This direct communication between ERP, EAM, field service management software and IoT devices on the plant floor or in the field is essential for organizations to achieve more advanced use cases with IoT. 

  • Use ERP Default Options Instead of Integrations 

If your ERP system has IoT support built-in, use it. 

Many businesses that use IoT data in their ERP system have gotten where they are through extensive systems integration work. This is a costly option, however. If you can use standard technologies to achieve ERP-IoT integration, you will be able to achieve ROI that much more quickly. 

  • Pick Your Fights 

Connected devices can cause a tremendous amount of data. Your company’s strategy for IoT should involve picking your fights, though. 

Rather than trying to port all of this data into ERP, it will make more sense to identify specific problems and define ways to solve them by exposing data from connected devices in your enterprise systems and operational zing  that data.

For instance, what’s the overall goal of your integration between IoT and ERP? Is it improved customer experience? Faster time to market? taking away of redundancies? 

These questions can help you focus on the right integrations and data usage projects. 

  • Start Small 

There’s a lot you can do with IoT data, but don’t attempt it all at once. Instead, start with some basic integrations and shoot for an easy win. Grab data and software already at your company, perhaps that cheap analytics package in place that nobody is using. Try things. Fail. Try again. 

Don’t try and integrate everything at once, though. 

  • Try Services that Make it Easy

Integrating IoT and ERP can be a challenging, but it also can be easy. 

Most ERP systems today have APIs that allow for easily passing data between cloud solutions, or from cloud solution to on-premise ERP systems. This can help make integration much simpler. 

Also consider using ETL (Extract, Transform, Load) toolsets to provide ease of use to connect all your data, error-free, in the cloud. 

  • Don’t Forget Security 

Finally, make sure that you also aspect in security when developing your IoT integration with ERP. It might be one of the biggest pain points for businesses, but overlooking security during integration opens the door to much greater pain down the line if there is a security breach. 

Making sure the connections between IoT and ERP are safe, solid and secure. Providing solid gated roads between applications is essential for protecting corporate assets. 

Many organization is letting their IoT data go to waste. Don’t let your business be one of them.