5 Steps To A Concrete Proof of Concept

Bryan Weinert
Jan 5, 2018 · 3 min read

Before a product is introduced in the market, the best way to test the water and evaluate the benefits and risks of a significant investment is by iterating the product’s Proof of Concept. It’s the safest way to refine user experience, processes and adapt to the constantly evolving changes in technology.

It’s also one of the biggest problems companies face when they want to get a firm understanding of ROI before they can allocate resources for execution. This article aims to simplify the Proof of Concept and help you gain a stronger grasp over its philosophy.

In simple words, Proof of Concept is the crucial step leading to the development and implementation of a new idea. Essentially, a Proof of Concept is the ability to demonstrate the pragmatism behind a proposed idea for a corporate need. It’s the way to identify technical and logistical issues which pose the possibility to block a business from meeting its needs. We leverage this technique to gain feedback on the product or service from the business users to eliminate the risk factor of development in wanted and unwanted features.

It’s the best way to find out how we demonstrate our initial suggestions and the benefits a client has by focusing on a core development, enabling our clients to see the results prior to a full project investment. For a more efficient transition and implementation of an idea, consider the following method that shapes as the basis of any thorough Proof of Concept.

A lesser known but equally critical component of the same philosophy is Proof of Capability. This is a core approach that centers attention on the feasibility of a specific capability within an established idea or concept. Here’s how to nail that method down.

  1. Define: Know who your team players and stakeholders are. Ensure the delineation of goals and input, scope and criteria. Hold yourself accountable for the following of a schedule and include documentation, the definition of success integral to you, and a timeline in your deliverables.
  2. Develop: For minimal but cogent functionalities, create use cases. Keep your stakeholders and business users in the loop across the process and include use cases, success criteria in this phase of development.
  3. Engineer: Put your idea to the test. If it’s an infrastructure and software, rigorously examine the usability of it. Include design, implementation plan and the definition of success in this phase’s deliverables.
  4. Execute: Weigh out the possibility of both positive and negative situations and test your concept in both scenarios to see its longevity. Include test cases, scripts and results in this phase’s deliverables.
  5. Evaluate: Step back and review the results with your team and clients. Make them actively participate in this process. Compare the expectation and reality of outcomes to see how they met (or didn’t) your success criteria. Include evaluation model and findings with comparisons in this phase’s deliverables.

The pathos behind a Proof of Concept is to dedicate yourself to the refinement of an idea, its practicality once applied to real-life situations within the realm of business needs and seek a way to make sure any lacking areas are removed. It’s also important to remember that while a Proof of Concept is a vetting methodology for new ideas and visions, it may not always contain the answer to your question.

Incipient Corp.

Incipient is a leading software consulting firm based in…

Bryan Weinert

Written by

A creative technologist who serves Incipient as Partner and COO.

Incipient Corp.

Incipient is a leading software consulting firm based in Rutherford, NJ specializing in the implementation of ERP, CRM, Enterprise Mobility, and Cognitive Technologies.

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