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POC, POV, POT: Make your projects a success by avoiding the museum of prototypes within your organization

How to choose between POC, POV and POT?

Innovation is the driving force behind corporate growth and success. In this quest for innovative ideas, companies often turn to research activities initiated for exploratory purposes. These include tools such as Proof of Concept (POC), Proof of Value (POV) and Proof of Technology (POT). All too often, however, these approaches result in the creation of a “prototype museum” within an organization.

This museum, where prototypes and proofs accumulate without any real use, represents a waste of resources, time, and energy.

Discover in this article the definitions of Proof of Concept (POC), Proof of Value (POV) and Proof of Technology (POT) methods; and how to use them strategically to maximize your chances of success towards scale-up.

POC (Proof of Concept), POV (Proof of Value), POT (Proof of Technology): Definitions

The terms “Proof of Concept” (POC), “Proof of Value” (POV) and “Proof of Technology” (POT) are used in innovation and technology development to describe different stages of validation. Here’s how they differ.

Proof of Concept (POC) definition

A POC aims to demonstrate the feasibility and viability of an idea, concept, or solution under real-life conditions. It often involves creating a prototype or rudimentary version of the product or service. The main aim of a POC is to validate the basic idea and determine whether it can be successfully implemented. This may involve creating a simplified version of the product to test its main features.

Proof of Value (POV) definition

A POV focuses on demonstrating the business value and tangible benefits of a solution or technology. Unlike a POC, which focuses on technical feasibility, a POV seeks to show how the solution can solve concrete problems and bring significant benefits to the company or end-users. It often involves testing in real-life scenarios to quantify efficiency gains, cost savings or other benefits.

Proof of Technology (POT) definition

The aim of a POT is to demonstrate that the underlying technologies or essential components of a solution are working properly, thus confirming their compliance with pre-established expectations. This can be achieved by creating prototypes to show that these technologies are capable of performing the specific tasks for which they are designed. A POT is generally a prerequisite to the implementation of a larger project, as it ensures that the technological foundations are solid.

In short, the main difference between POC, POV and POT lies in their objective. A POC aims to establish the feasibility of a concept, a POV to demonstrate the commercial value of a solution, and a POT to prove that the underlying technologies work.

POC, POV, POT: How to choose the best approach?

When should you opt for a POC?

A POC is appropriate when you don’t yet know whether your idea or concept is technically feasible. A POC should therefore be used to:

  • Establish the technical feasibility of an idea or concept,
  • Quickly test the main functionalities and characteristics of a concept.

When should you opt for a POV?

A POV is recommended when you have a relatively solid technical solution and want to demonstrate your ability to solve concrete problems. A POV is therefore preferable for:

  • Demonstrate the tangible benefits and commercial value of a solution,
  • Quantify the efficiency gains, cost savings or other benefits that the solution can bring.

When should you opt for a POT?

A POT is appropriate when you need to validate the soundness of a technology as part of a new project or concept. A POT should be used to validate key technologies before integrating them into a larger project.

To make an informed decision, we recommend that you:

  • Clarify what you want to achieve with your demonstration. Is it to prove feasibility, demonstrate value or validate technologies?
  • Assess how developed your concept or solution is. If you already have a prototype or working version, a POV or POT might be more appropriate. If you’re still at the conceptual stage, a POC might be in order.
  • Consider the needs and expectations of your stakeholders, whether management, investors, or end-users. Choose the approach that best meets their interests.

Linking POC, POV and POT methods

Often, the challenge lies in coordinating the different stages. Many organizations manage the POC, POV and/or POT in a single project, followed by the scaling-up phase. This approach often proves fatal to the project. In fact, the activities, objectives and means differ according to the different stages.

Each stage must be considered as a project, with teams, resources, and means adapted to each project.

These stages will therefore be conducted sequentially to ensure that an idea or solution is properly evaluated, developed, and implemented.

In practice, how do you go about it?

In practice, the aim is not so much to create a museum of prototypes, but rather to scale up. To successfully anchor a new use or new technology in your organization, it’s essential to structure the various stages involved in validating the POC, POV or POT.

By structuring these stages, you can offer your employees the opportunity to become key players in the project, while considerably increasing your chances of successfully scaling up.

If innovation is part of your organization’s DNA, and you’d like to find out more about setting up research activities, take a look at a testimonial from Poclain Hydraulics, which uses IDhall to monitor its advanced studies.

Innovation culture: the long-awaited guide to success!