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Business Platforms & Internet of Things

We truly hope that you are still healthy and safe in a time where COVID-19 has not been defeated and we are struggling to contain the virus. It seems that the virus is steadily using the human gene platform to re-launch itself for a second wave. When looking at this edition’s theme (Business Platforms & Internet of Things), we also feel the impact of COVID-19. Various business platforms have been hit hard by this crisis (e.g., Uber and AirBNB). However, as Editing Board of Compact Magazine, we think it is important to not only focus on the negative side, as we strongly believe that this type of crisis also works as a catalyst for the innovation power of organizations.

In order to provide you with a broad perspective of business platforms and IoT, we have chosen to approach this theme from a holistic perspective by not only focusing on the technical dimension, but also on the organizational and managerial/control aspects. Both dimensions need to be addressed in organizations so that they can successfully implement platforms or IoT solutions. For example, you can read an interesting article in the way the Dutch National Police reduced the complexity of their IT landscape by introducing a more uniform way of working supported by a robust IT systems platform, called OneIT concept. In our view, this type of rationalization is a key prerequisite for successful digital transformation.

When zooming in on the technical dimension, you can see that ERP providers like SAP and Microsoft are also working hard to create business platforms and IoT functionalities (e.g. the Powered Platform of Microsoft). In this Compact edition, we therefore pay explicit attention to the strategies that ERP providers are applying. However, not only ERP providers are trying to expand their footprint in this domain, low-code platforms are also increasing efforts in offering efficient alternatives to be integrated or linked to enterprise platforms.

From a managerial perspective, we touch upon the way projects need to be managed as business platforms and also focus on how IoT are subject to continuous change. The challenge for organizations is how to orchestrate this change, thereby keeping pace with the digital transformation as well as staying in control. Platforms can help you in this endeavor by providing functionalities for managing your internal control framework.

As major sport events were postponed or cancelled due to COVID-19, this fall is characterized by a very compressed calendar of events, such as the three main cycling tours (Tour, Giro and Vuelta). You will find an article on the specific data analytics platform, which is also fed by sensor data, and used by Team Sunweb. Similarly, another sports platform, connected to the Amsterdam Arena stadium, also relies on sensor data and its multi-stakeholder ecosystem.

We wish you an enjoyable read. In case you like to further discuss any of the thoughts and visions shared with the various articles, do not hesitate to contact our editors or the individual authors.