Pandemic Use Case: IoT Data Is The Advantage

Aidan Zebertavage
Aidan Zebertavage | 2 minute read

The COVID-19 pandemic will continue to challenge enterprises to find new means of remaining competitive and operational during a public health crisis. Data can provide insight into the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic and help enterprises going forward. Organizations that took advantage of IoT before the pandemic are finding new and innovative ways to use it to increase safety during the pandemic. Let's take a look at how one organization used IoT before the pandemic, and how that same solution is now being used to provide useful data to assist in navigating through the pandemic.

Link to a guide about unlocking IoT Value.


Take, for example, Losant client CVG, Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport, and their bathroom-monitoring use case. This solution was initially developed using motion sensors to enhance the traveler experience. CVG knew that the number one item that airports are rated on is bathroom cleanliness. To better allocate cleaning resources, a key data point CVG needed was how many travelers are using each restroom.

Example restroom

By implementing an IoT solution that uses motion sensors at bathroom entrances to aggregate the number of travelers using bathrooms, CVG was able to gain insight into high usage restrooms based on active flight arrivals and departures. The data was then used to determine the average number of travelers that could use a bathroom before requiring cleaning and maintenance. Once these levels were set, alerts could then be sent directly to cleaning and maintenance staff as to exactly where to direct their efforts.

This solution also enabled understanding into:

  • Restroom supply estimates and replenishment
  • Fixture use and maintenance needs
  • Future sustainability modeling
  • Overall asset use repair/replace/modify planning

Reacting to a Pandemic in Real-Time

Now, this type of insight in the absence of a global health pandemic can be extremely valuable. But what happens when, in CVG’s case, the number of travelers flying drops significantly? What changes should CVG make to their cleaning and maintenance efforts? What data do they have available that can help inform these decisions?

Example of a wearable device used for IoT

In fact, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, CVG was able to leverage the same data provided by its IoT solution to respond to changes in bathroom uses in real time. By leveraging 90-day trends of monitoring restroom activity, CVG was able to make decisions to:

  • Reduce the number of restrooms in use
  • Monitor activity in the remaining restrooms
  • Adjust staffing needs as warranted

Visualizing the Pandemic’s Impact

As shown in the below figure, CVG was able to visualize the change to traveler frequency in real time. This collection of data then enables informed metric-based decision making. The same IoT solution that was implemented to identify high traffic bathrooms was now used to show the real-time impact of COVID-19 on travelers.

Visualization of CVG Airport IoT Solution

Because CVG had this solution in place well before COVID-19, this application was able to provide real-time feedback and show the impact the disease has had on travelers and the impact to CVG facilities management. Without a solution, many enterprises are without the necessary data and analysis to make informed decisions amidst this rapidly changing environment.

Navigating and making decisions for your business through a pandemic is difficult and is even more challenging if you don’t have the right data at the right time to inform your decision. In addition to assisting enterprises with smart environment applications, Losant can help you and your team develop IoT solutions across a variety of industries.

Schedule a walkthrough of our platform with one of our Solution Architects and learn how IoT can enable data-driven insight to enhance your business.