It’s your job to protect project scope

Yes it is. Someone needs to do it, so why not you! Protect the project scope!

Well, there are some major assumptions that need testing in the above words:

  1. someone needs to do it; I am still coming across projects where the scope of the project is identified, agreed but not managed. So, whether you are a project sponsor, project board member, project manager or team member. Take responsibility and protect what has been agreed.
  2. protect the project scope; why bother? I have assumed of course that the scope of work has been agreed. If this is the case then the scope needs protecting. I see too many projects where scope creep seems endemic. (Scope creep, amending the scope of work to be done without an agreed process to check that the ‘new work’ is worth doing)

A lack of protection around the scope is a clear risk. It is also a governance one – who can make the decisions to change the project and how.

So, here is a simple process to help you manage scope creep or requests for change. It is by no means perfect and you will need to put your head above the parapet by suggesting completing of a change request form. Download a brief PowerPoint presentation here and some hard copy documents.

“Scope creep is a sick illness treatable only by saying no.” This quote came from a project manager who decided to challenge the ‘request’ from a senior manager to include something in the project. I suggested he should avoid saying NO but use the process. He did and focused on the process in the presentation and it worked!

Get the presentation here and some free templates!

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3 Responses to It’s your job to protect project scope

  1. Just what I was looking for. I was searching for Project Management articles when I discovered this story on Yahoo. This is exactly what I was looking for. I’ve bookmarked this post for future reference 🙂 Nice post – Cheers Jane

  2. Pingback: Project Management Reviews

  3. Son Nguyen says:

    Dear Ron,

    Thanks for nice post on scope management,

    Actually, this post led me to write an article on the basic principles of project scope management, to summarize some key principles that if we fail to meet, we will fail to manage our scope.


    However, I am really interested in more inputs on the question: Is following these principles ensures effective project scope management?

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