Many companies are planning the digitization of certain business processes. Often, the processes, use cases and requirements have already been identified. Now the next logical step is to select a solution and launch it in the company. Whether the proposed solution also works in reality must first be proven.
This is where the proof of concept comes into play. It provides proof of feasibility and puts the digitization project to the test. This enables companies to gain initial insights into their project and get a comprehensive view of the solution. The PoC thus provides a solid decision-making basis for the future course of the project.
This article explains: What is a proof of concept, how does a proof of concept work and what added value does it bring.
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Definition: What is a Proof of Concept?
A proof of concept (PoC) is a feasibility study at the beginning of a project that checks whether something will work as intended. It is used to ensure that the solution is suitable for the use case and will produce the desired result.
In a nutshell: The proof of concept shows whether a project can be realized as planned.
The criteria for assessing the success of a proof of concept can be of both a technical and a business nature. The proof of concept (PoC) is often also referred to as proof of principle, proof of feasibility or pilot project.
The term originates from project management. It is an essential milestone in project development. After all, the PoC creates the decision-making basis for the further course of the project.
Why perform a proof of concept?
Imagine you implement a new software solution and invest a lot of time and resources into it. Only to find out afterwards that the solution does not fit your company’s needs.
To prevent this from happening, there is the proof of concept. It ensures that businesses don’t invest in something that doesn’t fit their needs.
In fact, many enterprise digitization initiatives start to look exactly like this: The projects are often lengthy, complex undertakings with which the company incurs a high expenditure of time and capital, as well as a high level of risk. The reason for this is that with such complex projects, it is hardly possible to drop out or to try out another option.
However, this does not have to be the case! With the proof of concept, companies know within a few months whether the solution delivers what it promises. And still have the option to exit easily if it doesn’t. This helps to minimize costs and risks.
These are the benefits of a PoC:
Proof of Concept (PoC) is a quick way to check whether the solution is suitable for the company and the specific use case.
After the proof of concept, all involved persons in the company have:
- A comprehensive impression of the solution.
- Confirmation that all critical requirements have been met.
- Feedback from users from the test run regarding function and acceptance.
- Proof of the feasibility of the digitization project.
- A well-founded decision-making basis for the future course of the project.
How does a proof of concept work at Testify? What is the content focus?
In the proof of concept, the customer’s needs are determined first and foremost. Measures are then planned and implemented. In this way, the solution can be explored and practical experience can be directly made.
At Testify, we have created a roadmap of how companies can get to the “go-live” phase in 6 steps in the process of the PoC:
In Testify’s well-established proof-of-concept flow, the following steps are relevant:
- Kick-Off Workshop.
- Know-how transfer.
- Specification of requirements.
- Conclusion of the PoC.
Typically, a proof of concept takes two to four months.
Proof of concept in figures: What successes can be claimed at the end of a PoC?
Based on the proof of concept that has already been carried out, we can use the anonymous data of a project example to illustrate what a proof of concept can look like and how it can be measured.
The proof of concept thus creates the first milestones for a successful digitization project.
In addition to the hard-facts, other findings can be recorded in the PoC. The entire team and all users get an impression of the usability and functions of the software.
Through this study, companies get direct feedback from all team members involved at different levels and from different phases in the process. From the area manager to the employee on the store floor. From data collection to reporting. This guarantees a holistic evaluation of the solution.