Ignite | IoT Solution Delivery

Ignite | IoT Solution Delivery is the part of the Ignite | IoT Methodology aimed at IoT product managers, project managers, solution architects, and other IoT stakeholders. The goal is to make IoT best practice available in the form of a technology-independent, reusable, open-source methodology that supports IoT solution design as well as IoT project setup and management by providing project templates, checklists, and solution architecture blueprints.

A key characteristic of IoT projects is that they tend to combine multiple, very different disciplines within a single project that incorporates product design and manufacturing, embedded hardware and software, local and remote communication, enterprise application development and integration, cross-domain security, etc.

Multiple Dimensions of IoT Project Management

Multiple dimensions of IoT project management

Take, for example, the eCall solution presented in Part I. From an asset perspective, this is only a tiny part of the hugely complex Bill of Material (BOM) of a modern car. Nevertheless, from the eCall project manager’s perspective, it is important that they manage the asset interface and ensure that on-asset components are properly integrated, which means finding the right place to install the eCall Telematics Control Unit (TCU) in the car, incorporating the TCU into both the BOM and the manufacturing process, and so on. The TCU and its software represent a traditional embedded project, with very specific skills required for development and testing. Integrating the solution with a mobile carrier network that covers all required regions and then managing this carrier integration is more like a small telecommunications project, requiring a different skill set. Finally, implementing the backend software to enable the call center to manage incoming calls, route them to an agent with the appropriate skills, and forward them to the PSAP (Public-Safety Answering Point) is more reminiscent of a traditional enterprise software project. As we can see, even a project of moderate complexity like the eCall project requires the combination of multiple skills.

At present, there are only a limited number of experts available with the required level of in-depth experience in this kind of multi-disciplinary project management – for example, those who have successfully managed telematics and M2M projects and are now starting to apply these skills to IoT projects. However, in order for the IoT to gain more widespread acceptance, it will be necessary to make this experience available to a broader audience. This is the goal of Ignite | IoT Solution Delivery. We aim to provide a high-level methodology that integrates all the various skills and disciplines required for IoT projects, and then collaborate with experts from the different disciplines to record their experiences and best practices and incorporate them into the methodology.

Ignite - Solution Delivery

Ignite | IoT Solution Delivery

Ignite | IoT Solution Delivery can be broken down as follows:

  • IoT Solution Lifecycle: This perspective focuses on planning, building, and running IoT solutions.
  • IoT Building Blocks: This perspective contains reusable artifacts from successful projects, in the form of IoT Project Dimensions, IoT Architecture Blueprints, and IoT Technology Profiles.
  • IoT Project DB: This is a database of reference projects that have been analyzed in order to derive best practices for the IoT Solution Lifecycle and Building Blocks.

The IoT Solution Lifecycle contains the following elements:

  • Initial Project Design: This design blueprint builds on the elements defined as part of the generic IoT Building Blocks, including project self-assessment using IoT Project Dimensions, solution architecture using IoT Architecture Blueprints, and technology selection using IoT Technology Profiles.
  • Project workstreams: This blueprint defines the top-level workstreams typically found in an IoT solution project. A checklist for each workstream is provided, along with a list of common dependencies between the workstreams.

The IoT Building Blocks consist of the following elements:

  • Project Dimensions: This is a precursor of formal project requirements. Project dimensions are used for project self-assessment, project comparisons, architecture and technology selection, etc.
  • Architecture Blueprints: Building on existing architecture blueprints (such as Service-Oriented Architecture, or SOA), these add new architectural perspectives necessary for IoT projects and provide a superstructure for integrating the various architectural perspectives that are required.
  • Technology Profiles: These profiles identify and describe the most important technologies usually required for IoT projects. It leverages IoT architecture perspectives to describe where these different technologies fit into the overall IoT architecture. Finally, it attempts to link back to the project dimensions in order to support the technology selection process.