The virtuous circle

Part of the usefulness of a digital twin lies in its capacity to be modeled on reality but developed in isolation from the real world until it approaches the best possible performance in its current and anticipated circumstances. It starts as a replica of the real thing, with all the compromises that may entail, and evolves towards the ideal.

It’s therefore a good idea to have a sense at the outset of what that ideal may be. Over the years, Capgemini has built a comprehensive corpus covering finance, HR, and supply chain operations. This involves developing a deep understanding of a business’s key drivers, the minutiae of individual business processes, and the tools and resources, human and otherwise, employed to pursue them. It is this unique collection of assets that underpins our Digital Global Enterprise Model (D-GEM) – Capgemini’s architecture to capture the necessary metadata and parameters necessary to build a comprehensive model – and gives us a head start understanding the ideal.

By considering all these factors, the metadata of the organization and its activities, people, and systems can be gathered and shaped to help define a model.

With the ideal in place, organizations can start to map out the current real-world practices against which they will be measuring and testing.

The virtuous circle of the digital twins

Figure 1. The virtuous circle of the digital twin

Look at the diagram in Figure 1. The process begins on the left with business mining. Business mining incorporates technology (process mining and system monitoring) and digitally assisted consulting that helps organizations execute Capgemini’s ESOAR methodology (Eliminate, Standardize, Optimize, Automate, Robotize – see Figure 2).

The technology provides the “as-is” evidence – what’s actually taking place in the systems as they operate today. But that’s only part of the story. The technology helps to visualize what’s going on but it doesn’t explain why things are the way they are. This where the organization has to tap into people’s personal experiences to create a sense of why processes are structured the way they are.

This provides a clear and full perspective on how things are operating, which is used to generate the model of the digital twin.

Figure 2. Capgemini’s ESOAR methodology

Armed with all the details, characteristics, financials, and metadata of “as-is” processes, organizations can create a model of what’s happening today – that is, the digital twin. They can then use this model as a test-bed for simulating any number of scenarios, exploring hypotheses and opportunities for change.

These insights will enable organizations to work out what’s best for the current situation – including budgets, the appetite for change, the speed of response required, and more – and then execute the improvements, before starting the cycle over again. In essence, it drives a virtuous circle.

The technical backbone of the digital twin receives data feeds and orchestrates the business mining, modeling, and simulations. It embeds and supports the industrialized application of ESOAR. In combination, this reveals the DNA of the organization and enables it to work pathways for accelerated evolution.