- When selecting and deploying a new tool or vendor, the proof of concept, pilot, and implementation/migration are distinct options.
- A PoC is to determine suitability of tool(s) and/or vendor(s), whereas the pilot discovers issues in a real partial implementation.
- Site visitors would not see a proof of concept whereas they would a pilot.
Oftentimes, a tool and/or vendor selection is part of a large-scale site digital migration or redesign. When a new CMS is involved, you will want to make sure to put the CMS through a proof of concept, which should be part of your CMS selection process. The same goes for a new implementation partner. A migration or redesign should include these three steps if you are going to use a new CMS. This table highlights the differences between a proof of concept, pilot, and full migration:
|1) Proof of Concept||2) Pilot||3) Full implementation / Migration|
|Purpose||Determine suitability of tool(s) and/or vendor(s)||Discover and fix issues that arise during fairly real if partial implementation||Move off of old platform and onto new|
|Choose another option at end of stage||Possibly||No||No|
|Only prod a bit at the tool or just watch vendor demos||No||No||No|
|“Real” content contributors use||Maybe||Yes||Yes|
|Site visitors use||No||Yes||Yes|
|Concentrate on migrating in only one full section of site (content, templates, functionality, etc)||No||Yes||No (implement all needed for launch)|
|Implement only key use cases||Yes (concentrating on functionality)||Yes (for end-to-end capabilities)||No (implement all needed for launch)|
|Implement what's easy||No||No||Yes (as part of full implementation)|
|Concentrate on functionality that could break||Yes||Yes||No|
|Concentrate on the “bulk” that needs to move in||No||No||Yes|
|Concentrate on server load||No (unless a key issue that could drop a tool)||Yes||Yes|
|After stage, possibly quickly scrap development to start from scratch||Yes||Yes||No|
|Estimate end user effort (to gauge total migration effort)||No||Yes||No|