The days of the Internet of Things being considered theoretical and experimental are over. Not only do 94% of business executives think IoT can help their companies increase revenue, but most say they’re already using IoT to expand or transform new lines of business.  This according to a recent Forbes Insights Survey of 700 executives.

The takeaway from this survey, and the use of IoT in general, goes far beyond revenue benefits. Data and intelligence in general continue to improve organizations, and IoT is part of the larger business transformation story that will also improve the lives and experiences for end customers. For instance, 63% of those surveyed said IoT capabilities are helping them deliever new or updated services to customers.

Below are three tangible ways IoT is already helping businesses support and innovate in manufacturing, inventory management, and retail.

1. Unlocking Operational Efficiencies: By adding sensors that can communicate with one another in factory production lines, assembly line managers can more efficiently track operations and performance. Rigorous production flow monitoring data enables predictive maintenance, as well as the ability to automatically order new parts or adjust processes to mitigate production slowdowns. No matter where the manager is on the factory floor, he or she gets real-time access to information about operational efficiency.

2. Transforming Supply Chain Management: For companies needing to manage a large inventory of assets, the IoT can be used to provide necessary and critical information about the location of a large number of items. Built-in GPS location can allow management to locate every item, which is tagged with its own unique identifying code. This can help avoid stock shortages, and overstocks.

3. Improving Customer Experience and Satisfaction: Real-time data doesn’t only help companies with inventory, it can provide insight into customer experience and satisfaction.  Maintenance teams and customer service professionals can now understand and solve customer problems much sooner, increasing customer satisfaction, attraction and retention.

As IoT matures, more companies will become comfortable with these technologies and use them throughout all parts of their business.