Project Management

Project Scope Creep and How to Success

Project scope creep is not something strange to IT managers anymore, and it is actually an inherent part of IT development. However, scope creep can make direct impacts on a project, such as increased costs, stretched timelines, and negative customer satisfaction and team morale. But it is not “incurable” since all you need is a concrete plan and a proactive stance on the project. Leigh Epsy, in a post for Project Bliss, says that the scope management plan should include the following components:

  • The process for preparing the scope statement
  • The process for creating the work breakdown structure (WBS) and its associated WBS dictionary
  • The process of formal acceptance of project deliverables
  • The process for changing the project scope

Don’t Complicate Simple Things

The project scope management plan is a document that lays out a plan for your project scope statement and how the project team will handle any changes to the project scope. A project scope management plan should explain how the project scope will be identified and documented, how the work is broken into smaller components, and how the project will be formally accepted by the customer/client. Don’t forget to leave room for changes, as well, because things don’t always follow the schedule in a perfect fashion.

The key part of this plan might be identifying and getting agreement and understanding on the way to handle any changes to the scope. If a customer wants to modify something, the team should be able to meet his or her needs by fixing the costs and adjusting the schedule accordingly. And don’t procrastinate—delaying things does no good to anyone. Take the action as soon as possible to set clear expectations and guarantee a mutual understanding to avoid stress later. Epsy adds this:

If you depend on critical customer subject matter experts who are not readily available, identify in the document how you’ll get access to important information so that you can accurately developing your scope. If you don’t get all the necessary information to determine the scope, you’ll more likely experience project scope creep.

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