Scope is defined at a high level by describing the
boundaries and deliverables of your project. You add more detail to that
definition through the gathering of your business requirements. Once these
items are agreed to by your sponsor, you can manage overall scope change
through a simple scope change process. Remember that having your scope and business
requirements approved doesn’t mean nothing can change from that point on. It
means instead that you will manage the overall change process from that point
forward using a good scope change management process.
Here’s a simple scope change process that you can use on
potential scope change requests from any project stakeholder, including the
project team, clients, sponsors, etc.
projects can document the scope change in a short form or an e-mail. For
larger projects, the scope change request should be formally documented
using a Scope Change Request Form. The important thing is that you need to
document the scope change in writing. Don’t act on scope change requests
you receive verbally.
the request into the Scope Change Log for tracking purposes.
person making the scope change request should define the business value to
the project. The sponsor will need this information to make a final
project manager will assign the scope change request to a team member for
further investigation. (The project manager could assign it to himself.) The
team member will first determine how much time it will take to investigate
the scope change request. If the time required to perform the analysis
will cause deliverable dates to slip, the request must first be taken to
the sponsor to determine whether the request should be investigated or
not. If the sponsor gives the initial approval to proceed, the workplan and budget may need to be updated to reflect
this new work. If the sponsor does not agree to investigate the change
request, then the request should be placed closed as “not approved”
on the Scope Change Log.
the scope change request, alternatives, business value and project impact
to the sponsor for a resolution (yes we do it or no, we don’t do it).
the resolution or course of action.
the resolution briefly on the Scope Change Log. If the Sponsor does not
agree to the change request, then the request should be closed as ‘not
approved’ on the Scope Change Log.
- If the
scope change request is approved, the appropriate activities are added to
the workplan to ensure the change is
implemented. The project budget should also be updated, if necessary.
current Project Definition (Charter) should be updated if an approved scope
change results in a substantial change to the project.
Throughout the process, make sure that you communicate all scope
change status and resolution to project team members and other appropriate
stakeholders. This is usually done by attaching your current Scope Change Log to
your Status Report. This helps manage expectations and shows how approved scope
change requests are impacting the project end date and budget.