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5 Reasons Why Business Requirements Help Lock in Project Scope

Letting the project scope expand too much is like letting too much air into a balloon–it bursts, and it makes people cry. But Karen Munro gives us five ways to get your project scope under lock and key in a post at Project Management Insight.

5 Requirements that Manage Scope

  1. Clearly Set Boundaries
  2. Stopping Materializing ‘Soap’ Creep
  3. Traceability of Deliverables
  4. The mandate for saying ‘No’
  5. Project committee approval for defined scope.

Very simply, a set of business requirements is a set of boundaries. If a project is focused on solving problem (j), when the business has only defined objectives (a) (b) and (c), then the obvious course of action is to abandon problem (j) in the interests of the enterprise.

There’s nothing creepier than slope creep. Adding additional (small) items over a prolonged period can cause unanticipated budget and time overruns, and a disproportionate project scope that seems to ‘materialize’ out of thin air.

The traceability matrix is a powerful solution designed to track project deliverables. The requirements designed into the matrix help manage scope by ensuring that the project manager is managing the project in a way that is consistent with business aims and project goals.

Amazingly, one of the most powerful business techniques for managing project scope is a single word – ‘No.’ Of course, that ‘no’ has to be coming from the right source, preferably the project manager. Per the business requirements, there will be some work that is within the project’s scope, and some that is not. Discretion is at the disposal of the PM.

The last business requirement that can control scope is in a document. The Project Initiation Document (PID) defines the business requirements and also allows the Project Steering Committee a clear view of the costs, timelines, and scope they are funding.

Read the original post at:

About Eric Anderson

Eric Anderson is a staff writer for CAI's Accelerating IT Success. He is an intern at Computer Aid Inc., pursuing his master's degree in communications at Penn State University.

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