When expanding your business by introducing a new project or a product, you need to be careful not to lose big amounts of money. To minimise the risk of failure, you must take many measures and make detailed plans or estimations. There are many methods, but it takes time to decide which to pick and which to skip. It’s easy to get lost and even easier to get overwhelmed.
An excellent method worth trying is implementing the proof of concept into the early stages of developing your new idea. It will help you to estimate if your new project is possible to achieve and will bring profit in the future. It is going to determine the most critical part of your investment.
To better understand this practice, you can read the article down below. The following text will provide some definitions, explanations of use and a helpful guide for writing your own POC.
What does proof of concept mean?
Proof of concept is a process of creating a working model of a proposed product/project outcome or business idea in its earliest stages to determine its viability. This is a method and a project tool for testing a concept or hypothesis to decide whether or not it is possible/rational from a business perspective and can be implemented successfully.
In Agile, a POC is an early demonstration or prototype of a new idea or product, which is created to test the possibility and probability of implementation and potential of the idea before committing to full development. POC is typically a small-scale experiment that aims to validate key assumptions and requirements and identify any potential technical or practical challenges and issues related to a new idea or product. By creating a POC, the development team can quickly test and iterate on the concept and receive feedback from the client/stakeholders and/or customers to refine the idea further and implement changes to ensure the potential success of an improved image of the product.
POCs are commonly used in Agile software development to test new features or functionality. They are often created during the early stages of a project/before the start of a project to help the team identify potential issues and validate the viability of the project and likely final product. The goal of a POC is to determine whether an idea is worth pursuing and to minimize the risks and costs associated with developing an idea that may simply fail.
Different types of POC
POC is divided into a few types to address specific aspects of a project or idea. They all provide valuable insights and data to inform decision-making and reduce risks before proceeding with a larger-scale project. The few main ones are:
- Technical POC
A technical POC is carried out to address technical risks associated with a project. It involves a small team of engineers who validate whether the chosen technology stack can meet the project requirements. This type of POC focuses on solving specific technical challenges.
- Business POC
A business POC is conducted to validate a business idea or concept. It usually involves creating a prototype or minimum viable product (MVP) to be tested with potential customers to gather feedback. The feedback is then used to assess the viability of the business concept and make necessary adjustments.
- Marketing POC
A marketing POC is used to test new marketing strategies or tactics. It typically involves a controlled environment, such as a focus group, where a small group of people assesses the effectiveness of the marketing approach. The data collected from the marketing POC is used to make informed decisions about launching the strategy on a larger scale.
- Financial POC
A financial POC is conducted to assess the feasibility of a new business model or investment. It involves creating an economic model that projects the expected profitability of the venture. The goal of a financial POC is to demonstrate that the concept is viable and worthy of investment.
POC vs. prototype: What’s the difference?
When reading this, you may wonder: “hmm haven’t I heard it somewhere already? It is just a basic prototype!” Well, not actually.
As already mentioned – POC is a process. Its goal is to create a working model of a proposed product, project outcome, or business idea in its earliest stages to determine its sense, success rate and viability.
On the other hand, a prototype is a physical or digital model of the final product that shows practically what it will look like and how it will function.
While a POC’s goal is to demonstrate the potential of a proposed product or business idea, a prototype shows what the final product will look like and how it will function. A POC proves whether a business idea works, while a prototype shows the ‘test version’ of a final product and its features.
Proof of Concept vs. Minimum Viable Product (MVP)
Another concept that may sound familiar in this topic is Minimum Viable Product. However, as in the previous one, MVP differs from POC.
As I mentioned, Proof of Concept and a prototype are utilized during the early stages of product development and typically involve moderate to minimal investment.
Once you move on to developing a Minimum Viable Product (MVP), you are in the product stage, where you incorporate essential functionalities and features to gauge market reception. Building an MVP generally requires more time and investment than creating a PoC or prototype.
To explain more, MVP is a functional product that showcases the key features of your business concept. While it may not be a fully developed product, it is a tool to collect user analytics and gather feedback for further iterations. It allows you to refine and enhance features in subsequent versions based on user insights. To get more information on this topic, read our previous articles on MVP.
Why is having a proof of concept important for companies?
When investing, you often want to try and calculate everything. Thus it is hard to choose which guidelines you should follow. knowing this, let me explain to you why POC is such a great solution.
A proof of concept is essential for companies because it helps project managers, product owners, and business leaders understand the potential market, identify possible obstacles and provide or receive feedback on basic features. A successful POC can demonstrate the potential of emerging technologies (as it can happen currently with AI) and the technology stack needed to build the final product desired by the business.
A POC also helps companies determine whether a business idea works and is worth pursuing. It allows companies to test a concept or hypothesis before investing time and resources in the development process, which can only be successful with interim research.
How do you write a project POC?
Now you already know that this practice could bring a lot of good into your new project. The next step would be to implement it into your new project. Since you may still be unsure how to do it, I prepared a step-by-step guide with the most important steps you can follow.
- Define the objective
The first step is to define the objective of the POC clearly. Identify the problem you are trying to solve, the technology you want to test, or the concept of the project/product you want to validate.
- Identify the scope
Define the scope of the POC, including the features, functionality and technologies to be tested. It is essential to limit the scope as much as possible to keep the project manageable and achievable. POC should not be a considerable project. It focuses on a small-scale demonstration of the product.
- Select the technology stack
Select the appropriate technology stack for the POC. This includes programming languages, frameworks, libraries and any other necessary tools. Choose the technology stack that best meets the POC’s requirements and aligns with your development team’s skills. POC is an excellent place to learn and test new knowledge, but it shouldn’t be something you have no background in.
- Design the architecture
Design the high-level architecture of the POC. This should include the data flow, the integration of components and the overall structure of the POC. You can use graphs and any accessible and standard modeling tools to ensure clarity of the concept.
- Build the POC
Start building the POC based on the defined objective, scope, technology stack, and architecture discussed and agreed upon in previous steps. It is essential to focus on the core features and functionalities that must be demonstrated in the POC. It is important to have the scope and timeline set correctly in the previous step.
- Test the POC
Test the POC to ensure that it meets the defined objectives and requirements. This includes functional testing, performance testing and user testing.
- Document the POC
Document the POC, including the design, architecture, technology stack, and testing results. This documentation will help you evaluate the POC’s success and plan for the project’s next steps. It makes it easier to catalog and implement changes, verify and update requirements and log feedback.
What to expect from POC writing services?
If you still feel unsure about delivering this process yourself or have no time for it, luckily, there is a solution for you. You can hire specialists that will help you with the process.
A POC writing service assists individuals or businesses in developing and creating a proof of concept for their products, business ideas, or services.
They usually are involved in creating a detailed report or document that outlines and describes the concept, its potential benefits and the tools and methods used to develop the proof of concept. The report may also include technical specifications, market analysis and other relevant information to support the idea. Such services can be helpful for (often inexperienced) leaders, startups, entrepreneurs, or businesses looking to test the viability of their idea of, product, or service. POC writing service is a form of support for a company in creating and documenting a proper POC to heighten the possibility of success of a new business hypothesis. As many companies do not have a project management department, the POC writing service can be very useful.
In conclusion, if you think of developing a new project or a product, it’s easy to get lost in estimating its success. Calculating its profitability may get too messy or too long and will be useless in the end.
Among a few must-haves in planning your expansion, there should be an honorary place for POC. Proof of concept is a method and a project tool for testing an idea or hypothesis to determine whether it is possible/rational from a business perspective and can be implemented successfully.
You can do it yourself by following some guidelines. However, you can reach out for assistance if you still feel uncomfortable in this process or have no time for it in your busy schedule. SolveQ Project Managers hold lots of experience project development area and can help you get your project running smoothly and with no complications. Be sure to contact our team of experts in project management and development.