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“How can the Internet of Things and Artificial Intelligence make sense for my business?” 

This is the number one question I get whenever I meet with customers. I understand exactly where the question comes from. It stems from a desire to deliver more “predictive” services for customers — in other words, services that meet the needs of customers where they go vs. where they currently are. The Internet of Things (IoT) has made predictive services possible, while Artificial Intelligence (AI) has made those services ultimately scalable. 

So then, what are the steps you can take to move from your existing service model to a predictive model that leverages both IoT and AI? Here are a few thoughts.

 

Start with your data

 

Today, it's highly likely that data, in some way, fuels your business. But what you may not realize is that your IoT devices provide the greatest source of data to you. Still confused about what IoT actually is? The online publication, ZDNet, defines it as, "billions of physical devices around the world that are now connected to the internet, collecting and sharing data." Here at Salesforce, we like to define it as any device, product, or application created by your business that can send and receive a signal or create new data. Examples of this could include a robot that helps manufacture cars or mobile apps built with Heroku or Lightning External Apps

The data generated from these IoT devices creates a foundation for building engaging predictive services. Now, it's just a matter of figuring out how to act on that data.  

 

AI and the Salesforce Lightning Platform make sense of data

 

Establishing IoT at your company is one thing. Making IoT work hard for your business is an entirely separate challenge. 

You first need to determine what kind of IoT data is useful for your business. This requires a bit of testing and fine-tuning before getting it right. The good news is that Salesforce IoT can take this weight off of your shoulders by giving you a quick and easy way to test and deploy IoT orchestration models using our low-code methodology. The Lightning Platform then allows you to easily connect IoT orchestration rules to your existing service processes in Service Cloud, which then, in turn, allow you to automate new case creation based on that IoT data alone. Pretty cool, right?

Even though you have now connected IoT to your services, the work still isn't quite done. You now need to organize the volumes of data generated by your IoT devices to ensure it's all feeding into the right part of your business. This can be pretty straight-forward for small amounts of data but can become much more complex when processing IoT data in the millions — or billions! 

Fortunately, we have a solution for that, too! This is where Einstein comes into play. Einstein helps identify trends in your IoT data and organizes it based on those trends. For example, it can route data to the best team to solve a problem, escalate cases by priority, and even close cases once devices start operating appropriately again. Automatically. 

 

Transform your services

 

Salesforce IoT, the Lightning Platform, and Einstein together provide all the tools you need to build predictive services that help customer service reps prioritize cases and unlock new ways of serving your customers solely based on the IoT data you collect.

To learn more about how Salesforce can transform your services from reactive to predictive, take the IoT Trail on Trailhead.