Project Scope Management and the Dynamics of Change
Change is inevitable, and the only thing that is certain is change. While we can all agree to this, it is imperative that all project managers understand the impact of scope changes to projects that are in the pipeline or the execution phase. As project managers, the formal approval of functional and system requirements and design is an indication that we are ready to build out the product followed by testing and implementation.
Now consider the impact on your project when the business model changes with the organization. These business changes can have cascading impacts on the various phases of the project. From a project scope perspective, these business changes can force the stakeholders to rethink the requirements and design for the product or service being developed.
Let me attempt to define the potential impacts:
- Modify business requirements to include new scope followed by changes to business and function requirements
- Impact to current approved design, which means changes to product or service architecture
- Depending on the level of impact, the project may have to be cancelled
- Modifications to requirements and design could result in the creation of additional change requests to support scope, schedule and cost impacts
- If the scope impacts are significant the project, then the request may go back to the pipeline process for re-estimation and funding
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