Very rarely do companies or government departments invest immediately in a full-scale internal drone program. Typically, internal innovation programs led by one or more “UAV Champions” convince senior managers to conduct a limited trial of UAV technology, with the goal of proving a business case sufficient for executive buy-in.
With UAV technology becoming more robust and diverse, trials of this technology are moving swiftly from being fanciful to proving real results.
START WITH THE DATA, and work backwards
What exactly about your company’s data collection workflow can be improved by UAVs? Be clear about this before selecting what technology you need to achieve it.
WHAT METRICS are necessary to convince senior management to invest? ROI, new revenue streams, risk mitigation & workplace safety are some. Management buy-in is helpful at this point – ensure you have a clear comms plan early on.
MAKE YOUR RESULTS IRREFUTABLE
Your results will be scrutinised – make sure you structure your methodology and ensure that you have the correct tools and training that gives you credibility.
START SMALL BUT EFFECTIVE
You need the minimum requirements to achieve the above – but don’t cut corners if it means invalidating your data. Make sure you set the quality benchmarks early as it will form part of your culture.
INVESTIGATE SCALING EARLY
The framework you set up for the PoC most likely won’t scale – be aware of the costs, regulations and implications of an integrated drone program early so your business case stacks up.