Understand your Goals: Developing a Digital Twin Information Strategy for your Building
Part 1 of the series Achieving Digital Transformation: Digital Twin Maturity Levels.
At Invicara, we define a Digital Twin as a rich information model about a building, or a virtual building. A Digital Twin aggregates building models and plans, data, and documents from multiple sources and, in turn, can be integrated with multiple systems. The flexibility of the Invicara platform lets us use the Digital Twin to create custom solutions for your business. In this blog series, I cover the five different maturity levels for Digital Twins, detailing how each level brings a new layer of insights into your building’s operational and financial performance. Each post in the series will discuss each maturity level in detail.
Recently, I had the opportunity to attend RealComm 2019 where my own running joke was, if you ask five different people what a digital twin is, you get at least 10 different answers! Understandably, there is a bit confusion out there and definitely a wide range of different perspectives!
At Invicara, we don’t see a Digital Twin as a single product, but instead, an ecosystem of integrated solutions. Our approach is unique: we don’t provide try to “out of the box” products with a one size fits all approach, but a flexible platform that allows us to build solutions that you need to transform the way you do business.
The Digital Twin of your building:
- Brings together all of the information you need – a single source of truth for your building
- Integrates data from multiple systems – giving you a “single pane of glass” for building information
- Supports the development of lightweight apps and custom solutions – helping you achieve your goals at a fraction of the cost of “ground up” software development or complex enterprise systems.
No matter how you define a Digital Twin, the question still remains, “how do we get there?” At Invicara, we’ve learned that our clients find success when digital transformation is a set of deliberate steps, and we’ve used these lessons to create a framework for Digital Twin maturity. This blog post explores the first step of the process, the development of a Digital Twin information strategy.
Setting up for Success
Developing an information strategy is the first step Invicara takes towards identifying the outcomes our clients require. We begin by asking and answering several questions during the beginning stages of engaging with a client, designed to help us understand the long-term goals for their building project. We work together as a team to answer questions like:
- What business outcomes or results is the client looking for?
- What building assets does the client care about and what information do they need for those assets?
- What workflows should be developed to collect that information and how will it be used down the road?
- What are the different roles and responsibilities of the project team and internal stakeholders?
As a next step, it’s absolutely critical to create an “information model” that identifies the right information and the right stakeholders to provide it. Working together, we flesh out the project requirements in detail to develop the proper workflows and data models prior to project start. From this, we create a template to clearly identify the requirements necessary to reach each project’s unique goals.
Our clients tell us that going through this exercise is incredibly valuable. It makes them look at their buildings in new ways and identify ways to improve operational efficiencies through better maintenance, lowered energy costs, improved asset life, better utilization, support transactions, and more. Interestingly enough, this practice provides a deeper perspective than just realizing the value of the technology itself, often highlighting adjustments needed to optimize organizational structure, resource availability, go-to-market strategies, and more.
Once there is an information strategy in place – a client is ready to take the next step toward reaching their desired Digital Twin outcomes. Join us next week as we explore the importance of the second maturity stage, developing a Project Twin.
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