Date of Award

12-2017

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science

Major

Industrial Engineering

Major Professor

Rapinder Sawhney

Committee Members

Anahita Khojandi, H. Lee Martin

Abstract

The Internet of Things (IoT) is the network of physical objects containing the embedded capability to interact, communicate, and otherwise exchange data with one another and the external environment over a network without human intervention. As the Internet of Things begins to grow into almost all aspects of business, the small to midsize business (SMB) must not get behind. Some unanswered questions include: How will small and medium-sized businesses (SMB) participate in IoT? Have they already begun participating and what challenges have they encountered along the way? Do smaller organizations have a disadvantage compared to larger organizations in the IoT landscape? A literature review and a survey of owners, executives and employees of SMBs were performed in order to gain a better understanding of the current state of awareness and use of IoT technologies. The thesis concludes with a theoretical recommended implementation plan that combines the literature on the strengths and weaknesses of the SMB with the results of the survey as well as the literature examining the challenges and opportunities of IoT into a series of recommendations for implementation. These recommendations are given in the form of a “Maturity Model” that will cover the steps from infancy to a fully mature implementation of IoT solutions.

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