Budget and schedule overruns in product development due to the use of immature technologies constitute an important matter for program managers. Moreover, unexpected lack of technology maturity is also a problem for buyers. Both managers and buyers would benefit from an unbiased measure of technology maturity. This paper presents the use of a software maturity metric called Technology Readiness Level (TRL), in the milieu of the smart grid. (The smart grid adds increasing levels of communication and control to the electricity grid.) For most of the time they have been in existence, power utilities have been protected monopolies, guaranteed a return on investment on anything they could justify adding to the rate base. Such a situation did not encourage innovation, and instead led to widespread risk-avoidance behavior in many utilities. The situation changed at the end of the last century, with a series of regulatory measures, beginning with the Public Utility Regulatory Policy Act of 1978. However, some bad experiences have actually served to strengthen the resistance to innovation by some utilities. Some aspects of the smart grid, such as the addition of computer-based control to the power system, face an uphill battle. Consequently, the addition of TRLs to the decision-making process for smart grid power-system projects might lead to an environment of more confident adoption.