All IT departments, large and small, are under financial pressure. Executives are asking for more from a frozen or reduced IT budget, at the same time as increasing pressure to embrace new technologies. So, the Head of IT is looking around to see what can be done to ease the pressure, both on and in the department.
Outsourcing is an option but that does not work in all environments, and in any case, there are some functions that must stay in-house, and the existing systems need to stay operational during any changes.
One option that is attracting significant interest because of its potential to reduce operational costs is Digital Twin Technology.
What is Digital Twin Technology?
Digital Twin technology is simulation software that creates a virtual replica of the physical infrastructure, including systems or products, together with their structure, behaviour, and performance.
The technology uses triggers, sensors, data analytics, and simulation tools to create a digital model that mirrors the real-world system in real-time. This digital model can be used to monitor and optimize the performance of the physical system, predict potential failures, and model alternative upgrade scenarios without disrupting the actual system.
It can be useful in some cases of failure where it can be used to test the effectiveness of potential solutions without aggravating the real problem or affecting whatever service levels remain.
Digital Twin technology is used in a variety of industries, including manufacturing, aerospace, healthcare, and transportation, to improve efficiency, reduce costs, and enhance safety.
Cloud automation refers to the use of software tools and techniques to automate the management and deployment of cloud resources. It enables organizations to provision and manage cloud infrastructure, applications, and services quickly and easily.
Reducing the resources needed to manage the cloud environment can be a good way to reduce operational costs and increase productivity.
It is becoming more and more relevant as organisations implement hybrid cloud solutions that need significant resources to manage their maintenance and integration.
Digital Twin Technology and Cloud Automation
Digital twin and Cloud Automation are two related technologies that can work together to enable organizations to better manage and optimize their physical assets and processes. By using digital twin technology, organizations can create a virtual representation of their physical assets and processes, which can be used to monitor and analyse performance, identify potential issues, and test changes before implementing them in the physical world.
Cloud automation, on the other hand, can be used to provision and manage the infrastructure and resources needed to support the digital twin, such as storage, computing, and networking, quickly and easily.
Together, digital twin and cloud automation can enable organizations to improve operational efficiencies, reduce costs, and improve the overall performance and reliability of their physical assets and processes. They can also be used to enable new capabilities, such as predictive maintenance and real-time resource optimisation. That can help organizations stay competitive in today’s rapidly evolving business environment.
How can it Benefit IT?
Digital twin technology can be a valuable tool for IT departments in several ways. Some of the benefits of digital twin technology for IT departments are:
Simulation and modelling
Digital twin technology can be used to create virtual models of IT infrastructure and systems, including hardware, software, and networks. These models can be used to simulate different scenarios and test changes before implementing them in the real world.
Equipment and software upgrades can have unintended consequences, which can be identified and managed before implementation. Overall this can help IT departments to identify potential issues before they occur, reducing downtime and improving system reliability.
Another benefit is to model possible major environmental changes without affecting the production environment. For example, upgrading the existing network management software to a Software Defined or Intelligence Based network environment is a major step, affecting all users.
Digital twin technology can also be used to monitor the performance of IT systems in real-time. Analysis of data from sensors and other sources enables digital twins to predict when equipment is likely to fail or require maintenance. This can help IT departments to schedule maintenance more efficiently, reduce downtime, and extend the life of infrastructure equipment.
Training and Education
Digital twin technology can be used to train IT staff in a safe and controlled environment. By simulating real-world scenarios, digital twins can help IT staff to develop their skills and knowledge without the risk of causing downtime or other issues in the live environment. A good example is the aircraft flight simulators used to train aircrew.
Often, resource shortfalls in central IT lead to poor communications and poor levels of service with user departments. This can mean that users feel neglected. One of the prime drivers of departments and users doing their own thing and buying IT goods and services independently of central IT is that they feel invisible to central IT because of their poor communications with them. Shadow IT is never a good thing.
Digital twin technology can facilitate collaboration between IT departments and other parts of the organization by involving them in the simulation process.
By providing a shared view of IT systems and processes, digital twins can help to break down silos and improve communication.
Automating Cloud Management means that resources monitoring the cloud infrastructure and ensuring that things such as data synchronisation, application of user access controls, and backups can be released for more productive tasks.