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Concept phase

The first phase of the procured development process

Important with a short time span

In the initial concept phase, all suppliers who have qualified are allowed to develop a concept that meets the identified needs. It is important that the time span should be short in order to quickly progress in the innovation process.

In the process, it is central that one continues to follow the five basic principles: non-discrimination, equal treatment, proportionality (reasonable demands), mutual recognition, and openness. This is ensured in the way the interaction between the needs owners and suppliers is designed in the process, for example through equal conditions for all suppliers in the collection and sharing of information with the needs owners. In order to increase the pace and create the best conditions for the development of the solutions, information is shared and discussed jointly with all suppliers together. 

In the model Demand Acceleration the procurement process is supplemented with business development support for the suppliers to ensure that the business perspective is integrated early and the conditions for a market introduction increase.

Example from "Experience my reality"

In the "Experience my reality" case, the concept phase was four weeks, and the suppliers were replaced with 25,000 from the procurement budget.

During the first week, each provider had to hold an individual workshop with the owners of the needs (the cognition team at the care and social care administration in Karlstad municipality). After the individual workshops, all providers and the cognition team gathered for a debriefing meeting.

The concept phase generated new insights

The stakeholders' insight had changed so much in the beginning, as a result of seven different workshops, that they wanted to ensure that all suppliers left week 1 with the same information. During the remainder of the entire procurement process, the requirement owners wrote down any new insights in a shared wiki as they arose.

Support from DigitalWell GovTech Incubator

Each supplier also had an individual session with business developers from the DigitalWell GovTech Incubator with an introduction to KTH Innovation readiness levels, an evaluation tool to assess the maturity level of the supplier and the solution and see progress and potential weaknesses in a structured way.

See more information about the respective maturity level at:

A preliminary evaluation was carried out of each supplier's Team Readiness Level. The deliverables for each maturity level were also presented, based on the threshold values for being approved after the concept phase. The deliverables and evaluation criteria were developed with the goal of being as minimalistic as possible while covering the most critical aspects of the proposed solution.

The deliverables after the concept phase were:

  • A concept presentation in any format (slides, mockup, film, etc.)
  • Draft NABC (Business Readiness Level 2)
  • Draft market analysis (Business Readiness Level 2)
  • Draft Lean Canvas (Business Readiness Level 2)
  • A financial plan for the development phase (Funding Readiness Level 2)
  • Description of possible positive and negative consequences of the solution and the deal from a sustainability perspective (Sustainability Readiness Level 2)
  • Materials showing that the company has reached Team Readiness Level 6, if the preliminary evaluation of the team showed a need for it

The evaluation criteria for the solution in the concept phase:

The suppliers' solution concepts were evaluated and also assessed with a "go" or "no go" according to the criteria below.

In order to have the contract extended, "go" was required on all criteria.

FlexibilityDoes the proposed solution have the potential to support different types of experiences based on different types of cognitive impairment?

Commitment - Does the proposed solution have the potential to engage users emotionally? "The Goosebumps Factor"

SimplicityCould the proposed solution be implemented with reasonable adaptations and efforts from the business? It should also be possible for several users to experience the same scenario at the same time, and the solution needs to be easily transportable to other locations.

The evaluation criteria for the suppliers in the concept phase

Based on the KTH Innovation Readiness Levels, the companies needed to have achieved the following maturity levels, in relation to the proposed solution:

· Team Readiness level 6

· Business readiness level 2

· Sustainability readiness level 2

· Finance readiness level 2



The regional project DigitalWell is financed by the European Union - European Regional Development Fund. The purpose of DigitalWell is that we will together develop digital solutions for needs in welfare with the user's own abilities in focus.