Projects do not fail in a vacuum, and they do not fail strictly as a result of factors beyond your control. Internal factors share the blame, and it is within your power to control these variables. In a post for Voices on Project Management, Marian Haus examines how to analyze the scope in order to better influence project success.
The Risks to Manage
- Vague or unclear requirements and no change control
- Lack of clear roles and responsibilities
- Underestimated timelines
- Unclear or unrealistic expectations
- Project complexity
The most prominent reason for poor scope in regards to project management is vague requirements. This creates a lack of control. The solution is a quick remedy: make things clear in order to avoid risk. There is also the issue of blurred roles. The project is tailored to be executed in a manner that delivers the needs, so tailor the team to do the same. This problem could be because of a lack of communication between the client and other members of the team or even something else. Regardless, have conversations that clarify the wants and assign roles to carry this out.
Another element that is too often overlooked is the timeline.This integral element is underestimated because estimations are being based upon poor information that does not coincide with the scope. A timeline may be based on prior projects that do not align with the current one, and time will be inaccurately measured, which could cause a hike in the budget.
About poorly set expectations, Haus writes:
This is often related to the project scope. Your project team might be unclear about what it is supposed to deliver or what level of quality and maturity your deliverable will have to pass to meet the acceptance criteria. In other cases, the team might be unclear on how the delivery of your project scope will impact the receiving organization.
Finally, if the project is not broken down into more manageable steps, this can create complexity that is arduous to overcome. The team needs to have clear, achievable objectives in order to deliver the project properly and on goal. Understanding the scope will allow for the project to be executed well and documented as a success.
You can read the original post here: http://www.projectmanagement.com/blog/Voices-on-Project-Management/15293/