How Total Cost of Ownership can be Minimized in IoT Network?

By Jyoti Nigania |Email | Aug 31, 2018 | 4245 Views

Companies moving towards Internet of Things (IoT) for their expansion and growth as well as increasing the scope and complexity of industrial control networks that frequently with traditional IT networks. Network operators are discovering a host of associated direct and indirect costs that can often exceed the initial investment in networking hardware.

Apart from some overlooked costs and some suggestions the main challenge for the administrator is network challenge. The challenges for administrators are to understand every stage and the features of the devices. These features and problems don't appear in a spec sheet but they are essential to keep in mind when buying network products. Considering the network challenges then it is very easy to overcome with the costs of commissioning and operating costs. Following are the pointers which affect the total cost of ownership.

  • Minimizing Installation Costs: It is very hard to implement a complete brand-new network in an industrial environment but most of the networks are joining new equipment with upgrades on existing SCADA systems, control networks and devices. Now administrator has to choose and deploy the right devices to meet the network's current and future requirement. 

  • Minimizing Configuration Cost: The most time-consuming and expensive task is configuring devices on a network so that they secure settings, redundancy, interoperability, and efficient performance. This can be easily compared by using less expensive devices which needs more effort spent on configuring devices later on in the project. As the number of devices on a network increases, so do the possibilities for savings. Here are some of aspects of configuration process with a strong effect on total cost of ownership. 

  • Minimizing Operational Cost: The most important way to minimize the operational costs is to design a network that minimizes the amount of manual work needed to keep the switches and network operational. In addition, ensuring devices are suitable for industrial environments help the network operate at peak efficiency and performance. 

  • Cost for Technical Support: Administrators have multiple options while purchasing switches, ranging from inexpensive devices with no ongoing support or firmware upgrades, to switches with ongoing technical support that will cost more than the switch. As switches are often used on networks for longer than 10 years, technical support that comes with a switch will significantly affect costs in the long-term. 
Hence, after considering the life a network and the hidden costs that can arise during it, it is clear several factors must be considered when determining a network's direct and indirect costs. It should be noted that administrators can never be 100% sure what an IoT network's future needs will be.

Source: HOB