Re: Try Before You Buy - At Scale?
That's a good question and there are several answers. Certainly a virtual IT lab that is dedicated to prototyping products for real world agncy applications would be ideal. However, the 'prove it first' approach can be applied even at the project scale, with little to no agency investment, simply by requiring vendors to do a proof of value (POV) demonstrating their product's ability to solve a particular issue in the context of the project. Ideally, they would use (scrubbed) agency data and host the POV on a similar platform that the project is using or has planned. Given the opportunity to see the product working in the POV provides a far greater degree of insight than the standard presnetation or document format, and opens up the ability to ask more relevant questions about the product.
Hope this helps.