Demonstration provides small business owners an overview of how to initiate and plan demonstration projects when testing preliminary product desirability in the marketplace.

This module will introduce the concept of commercial demonstration projects through five topic areas:

  • Overview of Demonstration Projects
  • Planning and Design
  • Resources
  • Risk & Contingency
  • Outcomes
Lesson 1

Project Overview

A product demonstration is a trial or series of trials that help a company test a technology or product-offering in subsequently larger scales to assess the technical and economic merits..

By the end of this lesson you should be able to:

  • Define what a pilot test or demonstration project is
  • Understand why demonstration projects are important to the success of technology development
  • Understand the differences between the size and intent of different types of demonstration projects.
Lesson 2

Planning and Design Considerations

A project is a “planned set of interrelated tasks to be executed over a fixed period and within certain cost and other limitations.” A project can be broken down into five main components: Initiation, Planning, the focus of this lesson, Execution, Monitoring and Control, and Closing.

Planning can be long and complicated process, but is critical to the success of any project.

By the end of this lesson, you should be able to:

  • Identify the various components of a project plan;
  • Define each stage of the planning process;
  • Understand why the project planning process is important to your demonstration project;
  • Identify and utilize various planning tools; and
  • Apply the process to your own product and business.
Lesson 3

Project Resources

When talking about projects, the term “resources” covers many different items. This lesson will focus on key components of a project resource list, including: Financial resources; Strategic partners; Site and host; and People.

By the end of this lesson, you should be able to:

  • Identify various resources required to deliver a successful demonstration project; and
  • Understand why resource planning, particular with partnerships, is important to your project.
Lesson 4

Demonstrating Project Operations: Risk Response and Contingency Planning

When designing and implementing a demonstration project, it is important to account for the various types of risk that may arise and plan for them accordingly. Risk identification is critical to a demonstration project to ensure each phase of work in the demonstration project is completed in alignment with the overall objectives of the project.

By the end of this lesson, you should be able to:

  • Understand why risk identification is important;
  • Understand the basis of the relationship between risks and consequences;
  • Identify various types of risk response; and
  • Be able to discuss the basics of contingency planning.
Lesson 5

Measuring Project Outcomes

When it comes to data collection and analysis for a demonstration project, important aspects include:

  • The project’s stated objectives are measured against quantifiable data collected during the project;
  • Results are compared to the starting state to identify if the demonstration project was successful; and
  • Ultimate value proposition is achieved, through reliable, verifiable data.
  • By the end of this lesson, you should be able to:

Understand the type of data to collect to measure demonstration project outcomes;

  • Identify techniques on how to collect the right data; and
  • Apply lessons learned to improve future demonstration projects.

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