Posted by Karen Smith
According to our friends at Wikipedia, “proof of concept (PoC) is a realization of a certain method or idea in order to demonstrate its feasibility or a demonstration in principle with the aim of verifying that some concept or theory has practical potential. A proof of concept is usually small and may or may not be complete.”
At Clearion, we’re working with a growing number of utilities who, after experiencing enormous benefits, are replacing their traditional RFP process with pilot programs (aka proof of concepts) that enable them to perform thorough due diligence prior to investment.
Many have found that an effective proof of concept allows them to:
1. Test their approach to technology before making key decisions
2. Start small without incurring significant expenses
3. Be up-and-running quickly
4. Develop a configuration that is specific and meaningful to their environment
5. Seek immediate feedback for continuous improvement
6. Remain agile and flexible throughout the process and refine requirements, as needed
7. Determine if the proposed solution fits their ecosystem and environment
8. Gain a level of comfort with the proposed solution prior to investing further
9. Evaluate potential vendors to determine how well they meet their needs and provide support
10. Minimize the risk associated with a failed deployment
In short, using a PoC as an RFP substitute allows utilities to learn and apply their knowledge without having to spend an excessive amount of money and time. And, importantly, it enables decision makers to evaluate proposed solutions well beyond a polished sales and marketing pitch (because those folks are clever!)
Stay tuned for the second installment of my three-part blog series. Next, I’ll delve into some real-life examples of when to use a PoC.