Nowa­days, the pro­of of con­cept (POC) has beco­me more or less a stan­dard pro­ce­du­re in most soft­ware deve­lo­p­ment com­pa­nies. POC is used to assess the via­bi­li­ty of a pro­duct in a real mar­ket envi­ron­ment, whe­re true busi­ness needs exist. In one of our pre­vious arti­cles, we’ve alrea­dy cove­r­ed how to struc­tu­re POC and what goes into it exactly.

Today we’ll go bey­ond simp­le requi­re­ments and pro­ces­ses and talk about set­ting your busi­ness goals strai­ght in order to deli­ver the POC, your cus­to­mers will appreciate.

One con­ver­sa­ti­on that is often mis­sed, when tal­king about POC, is how is it actual­ly bene­fit the cli­ent? So here at Intech­Core, we’ve com­pi­led a small check­list to help you stay on track and think cus­to­mer-first during the pro­of of concept.

Iden­ti­fy Decisi­on Makers

Note: decisi­on makerS.

Very often, most com­pa­nies only envi­si­on their cli­ent as a sin­gle per­son with whom they com­mu­ni­ca­te. But most busi­nes­ses don’t func­tion in such tota­li­ta­ri­an regime. The­re are mul­ti­ple peop­le who run the com­pa­ny and influ­ence the final decision:

  • Busi­ness owner
  • CTO (chief tech­ni­cal officer)
  • Finan­cial manager
  • Mar­ke­ting lead
  • Etc.

In order for you to deli­ver and pre­sent tru­ly stel­lar POC, you need to think about how all the­se peop­le will see it. Becau­se if you pro­ve that the pro­duct in mind has an incredi­ble tech­ni­cal app­li­ca­ti­on but don’t pre­sent a clear mean of mar­ke­ting it, the who­le pro­ject might be in jeopardy.

Defi­ne Suc­cess & Align Expectation

Perhaps the most important aspect that is get­ting mis­sed all the time. You’ve hel­ped your cli­ent launch MVP (mini­mum via­ble pro­duct), and you gather some feed­back. What comes next? You haven’t actual­ly defi­ned any mea­sura­ble cri­te­ria of suc­cess. Here are a cou­p­le of ques­ti­ons you might want to ask yourself and cli­ent befo­re even starting:

  • Why are we doing this and what are we try­ing to achieve?
  • Which other pro­duct on the mar­ket are we com­pe­ting against?
  • With what other soft­ware can we com­pa­re the product?
  • Wha­t’s right or wrong with the way we launch MVP?
  • Wha­t’s the real value of the product?
  • Who will main­tain and upkeep the product?

By asking the­se ques­ti­on, both you and the cli­ent might unco­ver some pre­vious­ly obscu­red chal­len­ges or prospects.

Also, the­se ques­ti­ons will help you in aligning expec­ta­ti­ons with cus­to­mers and avoiding the situa­ti­on whe­re the cli­ent has unrea­listic forecast.

Know What to Do Next

After a suc­cess­ful com­ple­ti­on of POC, for a soft­ware deve­lo­p­ment com­pa­ny, the logi­cal next step is recei­ving a paycheck. But it doesn’t have to be this way. Having bet­ter cla­ri­ty on the next steps requi­red by each par­ty incre­a­ses the trust bet­ween com­pa­nies and streng­t­hens their partnership.

If you do a bit of extra work and stri­ve to go bey­ond simp­le MVP launch, then you might find yourself in a posi­ti­on, whe­re you have a loy­al cus­to­mer base who ent­rust you with their future pro­jects and will men­ti­on you as a trus­ted part­ner in the future.