Test an Innovation

Federal government departments can be the first to use, test, and evaluate state-of-the-art innovations not yet available in the marketplace to address specific departmental needs and increase operational efficiency.

A key benefit of the Build in Canada Innovation Program (BCIP) is that the program pays for the cost of acquiring the innovation and any services related to it such as installation and training.

Table of contents

How to become a testing department

Federal government departments can be the first to use, test, and assess one of the BCIP's pre-qualified innovations. To obtain and test an innovation, follow the steps below:

For further information on the process or about the available innovations, you can contact the BCIP innovations management team.

Meet the eligibility requirement

Departments listed under Schedule I, I.1 and II of the Financial Administration Act are eligible to become matched with an innovation and become testing departments under the BCIP.

If your organization is not listed but believe you qualify, please contact the BCIP innovations management team to confirm your organization’s eligibility.

Find a pre-qualified innovation

Visit the Pre-Qualified Innovations page to view descriptions of all pre-qualified innovations. From there you can decide whether a specific innovation would be of interest to your department.

If there is a pre-qualified innovation that you are interested in, please contact the BCIP innovations management team. The BCIP team can provide further detailed information or, if you prefer, put you in direct contact with the supplier to answer your questions.

Obtain an innovation: the contracting process

Getting an innovation is a contracting process consisting of three elements:

If your department is interested in getting an innovation, please contact the BCIP innovations management team. The BCIP specialists will guide you through the innovation management process.

Statement of Work

The Statement of Work (SOW) outlines the scope, objectives, deliverables, phases of testing, finalized testing plan and environment, and other important information pertaining to the procurement and testing process of the innovation.

The SOW is initiated once a testing department confirms its interest in proceeding with a specific innovation. It is based on discussions and negotiations with the testing department, the supplier, and the BCIP representative.

The duration of the testing, as agreed upon during discussions, is outlined in the SOW. The duration of the test needs to be reasonable and in sufficient length to ensure that the test can be carried out.

The finalized SOW is used as the basis for the contract that is awarded to the supplier.

Memorandum of Understanding

The Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) is the document that is signed between PWGSC and the testing department. It represents the finalized agreement for the testing of the innovation. The MOU also transfers the management and control of the innovation from PWGSC to the testing department.

The MOU process is initiated concurrently with the SOW and must be completed and signed prior to a contract award to the supplier for the procurement of the innovation.


The contract is the document that is signed between PWGSC and the supplier for the procurement and testing of the innovation.

Once the SOW is finalized, the contracting authority at PWGSC finalizes the agreement based on regulatory requirements and negotiates and awards the contract to the supplier.

Test and evaluate the innovation

During the testing period, departments use and evaluate the innovation according to the agreed upon conditions and requirements outlined in the Statement of Work (SOW).

Testing department responsibilities

Testing departments are required to adhere to the conditions and requirements outlined within the SOW concerning the implementation, utilization, and testing of the innovation. Specific responsibilities include providing the agreed upon testing environment, including necessary equipment and facilities, and adequate staff to be trained and to perform the test. Finally, testing departments are required to provide feedback on the innovation’s performance according to a mutually agreed upon schedule.

Provide feedback

Testing departments provide feedback once the testing has been completed using a standardized feedback form. Feedback is requested on satisfaction with the testing experience, success in meeting the requirements of the test plan, challenges encountered during testing, and perceived innovation benefits and future opportunities for use.

The feedback will be used by suppliers as a means of improving the operational performance of the innovation (if necessary) in order to facilitate the best possible transition into full commercialization.

Who to contact during the testing phase

The innovation management process involves several phases from identifying the desired innovation to providing feedback at the end of testing. There are four main representatives involved in the process:

  • BCIP program representative
  • PWGSC contracting representative
  • Testing department representative
  • Supplier representative

The BCIP team will provide guidance and facilitate the innovation management process for each departmental client.

Post testing

After the completion of testing, the innovation remains, in most cases, the property of the testing department.

Any requirements for an innovation that fall outside the scope of the BCIP, such as additional purchases or license renewals, must be handled by the testing department.