How insurers can put clever digital twins to work


In previous posts in this series, we’ve looked at what digital twins are, why insurers are slow to adopt them, and have big ramifications in four areas where I see opportunities for digital twins. For insurers realizing the potential value of digital twins, I recommend the following steps to get started.

1. Review your data practices. Assess what tools and technologies your company uses and where data is stored so you can break down data silos. If you haven’t started your cloud journey, now is the time to move your data and potential applications to the cloud.

2. Prioritize the construction of streaming analytics functions. Digital twins need a healthy data supply chain to be effective. Consider embedding sensors in physical products and rooms and invest in solutions that enable the data generated to be captured, processed and analyzed quickly. Your commercial customers are probably already doing this for their own reasons (e.g. occupational safety and efficiency). So the question is how do you “connect” this data supply chain?

3. Develop a list of key use cases. Think about where digital twins have the greatest impact in your company.

4. Rethink product development cycles. Can you imagine what product development with digital twins at its center would look like? Also, think about how product and price development practices would have to change as new payloads of data came in with greater frequency.

5. Integrate intelligence functions into digital twin efforts. Pilot generative (iterative) design or synthetic data solutions to see how they can improve your design, testing, and product development.

6. Design twins that are connected across the entire business or ecosystem. Make API Strategy a Priority When Developing Digital Twins. This means evaluating and including external (or open) data sources and designing an API for the digital twin itself.

7. Guide digital twin strategies with ecosystem-level thinking. Plan large plants as a long-term goal. The amount of data available will only increase from here, so that limited systems will hardly represent a short-term emergency solution.

8. Target digital twins. Think of entire offices, supply chains, and more. Use single twins to make larger collaborations more visible and combine them wherever possible.

9. Shortlist potential digital twin-driven partnerships. This can be the joint establishment of a new twin or the use of an already established network of digital twins.

Technology Vision for Insurance 2021 – We outline five emerging technology trends that will affect the insurance industry in 2021 and beyond.


The real value, in my opinion, lies in putting the digital twins together. This is not an easy task and therefore requires serious planning and a solid roadmap to implement an overarching digital twin infrastructure. But insurers who take the opportunity will see their businesses evolve and grow. They will be in a better position to work with ecosystem partners, to develop innovations with new products and offers, to gain a more differentiated understanding of risk and thus to price products more appropriately.

If you would like to get to know the possibilities of digital twins, please feel free to contact me directly. We can help plan your trip and make sure you choose the right tools and ecosystem partners to maximize your investment.

To learn more about the technology trends expected to affect insurers, read our report: Technology Vision for Insurance 2021

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Disclaimer: This content is provided for general informational purposes and is not intended to be used in lieu of advice from our professional advisors.

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