Innovation has become an integral part of running a successful long-lasting business. As the market shifts and transforms with new technologies, businesses must embrace change or face extinction (think Blockbuster or Toys R Us).
The problem with constant innovation is that it takes a considerable amount of risk — especially if you are not familiar with how to maximize your approach to the process.
Proof-of-concepts (PoCs) represent an approach to innovation that can help companies keep up with the latest trends while also maintaining more predictable and reliable results. Without a proof-of-concept, or several, companies risk betting everything on a technology or service that will ultimately provide little to no value after a lengthy and expensive implementation process.
With so much riding on innovation, PoCs have become an integral tool in the arsenal of every smart business owner – which is why they should be carried out in only the most organized and purposeful manner.
Below are the three main arguments for why a well thought-out and executed PoC strategy is vital to the success of every modern business.
Recognize Market Signals
One of the biggest roadblocks for embracing innovation is recognizing and acting on shifts in the market. Basically, you need to see where your industry is headed before it gets there.
The only way to do that is to constantly look toward the future and test out new and exciting technologies before they hit it big.
41.6% of innovation, strategy, and R&D executives we interviewed said that failing to act on market signals represents the largest obstacle to innovation.
If your business has a thoughtful and comprehensive PoC strategy that actively seeks out and tests potentially groundbreaking technologies — tech that has the ability to transform your industry’s approach — then you could anticipate technological shifts before they happen.
Then, when the change occurs, your business will be one of the successful trailblazers who jumped on it early, instead of one of the latecomers struggling to catch up at the last minute.
Manage the Unknowns
Another obstacle on the road to innovation comes in the form of the unknown. Despite the obvious benefits of a well-run innovation program, many businesses balk at the idea of sinking money into ideas that may not ultimately produce any value. Having a successful innovation team does not mean having a team that bats a thousand. Some loss is practically inevitable when trying to break new ground.
However, the key to running a successful innovation program means lessening risk and managing the potential unknowns — and (you may have guessed) that means having an organized and comprehensive PoC strategy.
With the right PoC strategy and program, your company can evaluate several technologies at once with consistent technical and business KPIs, pit their results against each other, and ultimately, make the decision that is most likely to benefit your company.
Focus on Innovation, Not Logistics
Potentially, PoCs can be a huge drain on your resources. If attempting to run them internally, you will need to pull valuable employees off their regular assignments to run the PoC, hire new employees with the necessary PoC expertise, or both. If you have no framework for approaching a PoC, then the process can be messy and unhelpful.
With a well-defined PoC strategy, most of these issues will be handled before you even approach your first potentially innovative vendor.
What that means is that having a PoC strategy allows you to focus more on the substance of your PoC than on the logistics of getting those results in the first place. Increased focus on results means more critical analysis, which means more potential for success, which in the end, will lead to more chances to innovate and push your business ahead of the competition.
Maximize Your Success
Every business that wants to stay ahead of the curve, and position themselves as an industry leader instead of an also-ran needs a comprehensive and well-executed PoC strategy. They can help you better identify future shifts in the market, unpack question marks that hold up innovation, and increase the time you can devote to breaking new ground. Understanding and acting on those benefits will help your business in ways you cannot anticipate.
After grasping that PoC strategies can help your business innovate more successfully, and ultimately maintain that success for longer, the question remains: how can a company create a PoC strategy that will work best for their business?
One of the easiest ways to ensure that your PoC strategy will cover all the necessary steps and common issues that will crop up, is to defer to the experts. PoC platforms like prooV allow you to take advantage of a team of proof-of-concept experts who will help you tailor a process that works together with your company’s goals to help push you to unprecedented levels of innovation and success.