Controlling Scope

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The Scope Management Knowledge Area includes Collect Requirements, Define Scope, Create WBS, Verify Scope, and Control Scope. You'll recall that project scope describes the work required to produce the product, service, or result of the project. This broad statement usually includes the product scope statement and the product description, which describes the characteristics, features, and functionality of the product, service, or result. The Control Scope process involves monitoring the status of both the project and the product scope, monitoring changes to the project and product scope, and monitoring work results to ensure that they match expected outcomes. Any modification to the agreed-upon WBS is considered a scope change. (It has been eons ago that you looked at this, so remember that the work breakdown structure is a deliverables-oriented hierarchy that defines the total work of the project.) This means the addition or deletion of activities or modifications to the existing activities on the WBS constitute a project scope change.

Changes in product scope require changes to the project scope as well. Let's say one of your project deliverables is the design of a piece of specialized equipment that's integrated into your final product. Now let's say that because of engineering setbacks and some miscalculations, the specialized equipment requires design modifications. The redesign of this equipment impacts the end product or product scope. Since changes to the product scope impact the project requirements, which are detailed in the scope document, changes to project scope are also required. This change, along with recommended corrective actions, should be processed through the Perform Integrated Change Control process.

Unapproved or undocumented changes that sometimes make their way into the project are referred to as scope creep. How often have you overheard a stakeholder speaking directly with a project team member asking them to make "this one little change that doesn't impact anybody...really, no one will notice." Make certain your project team members are well versed in the change control process and insist that they inform you of shenanigans like this. Scope creep can kill an otherwise viable project. Little changes add up and eventually impact budget, schedule, and quality.

The Control Scope process has five inputs, all of which you've seen before:

Project management plan

■ Work performance information

■ Requirements documentation

■ Requirements traceability matrix

■ Organizational process assets

There isn't any new information you need to know about these inputs for this process, so let's move on to tools and techniques.

The Control Scope process has one tool and technique: variance analysis. Variance analysis includes reviewing project performance measurements to determine whether there are variances in project scope. It's also important to determine and document the cause of variances and examine those against the scope baseline so that you can implement corrective actions if needed.

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Project Management Made Easy

Project Management Made Easy

What you need to know about… Project Management Made Easy! Project management consists of more than just a large building project and can encompass small projects as well. No matter what the size of your project, you need to have some sort of project management. How you manage your project has everything to do with its outcome.

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