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Topics: Communications Management, Risk Management, Scope Management
Schedule Creep
Do you believe if "Schedule Creep" occurs during the project, it can be controlled or it will cause a permanent deviation from the PM Plan?
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Good question Rami,

I think the "if" is a "when".

Schedule creep is only as good as the project manager. I think the idea that the PM can control schedule creep is highly overrated. To a degree a PM can influence the schedule through some techniques. The ultimate result sometimes is out of the control of what current resources, or scope permits. Then it becomes a means of communication to stakeholders and renegotiation.

I've seen very advanced techniques try to address this. Ultimately it comes down to the PM skill and the individual circumstance.
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1 reply by Rami Kaibni
Dec 30, 2015 2:27 AM
Rami Kaibni
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Thanks Steven. I agree with what you've mentioned especially that sometimes creep happens due to interference from client so to avoid this, we can enhance communication management but other times it happens due to market conditions, technological advancements and if these changes remains uncontrolled then it will lead to creep.

You mentioned a golden sentence: "Schedule creep is only as good as the project manager."

I've experience this once (Not as a PM) but as part of the PM Team and we ended up doing a mitigation plan. We could not control the creep 100% but we minimized it as much as possible.
Scope creep might lead to Schedule creep. Change Control is the solution for both Scope and Schedule control
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2 replies by Rami Kaibni and Steven Zachary
Dec 30, 2015 2:09 AM
Steven Zachary
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I'm not sure if integrated change control using any methodology can do much more then organize and frame change. Change is inevitable. Fixed schedules ae a moving targer.
Dec 30, 2015 2:20 AM
Rami Kaibni
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Well, exactly, I intended to mention Schedule Creep because if the scope changes in addition to the schedule and budget then it cannot be called scope creep any more. Scope creep happens when the scope of product is changed and the project budget and schedule remain unchanged.

As for change control, it can be a solution if you have a solid change control system and you tackle the issue while it is in the Scope Creep early phase but if it slips to Schedule / Budget Creep as well, then here comes the question, can you control it without collateral damage !?!
Dec 30, 2015 1:53 AM
Replying to Venkatramvasi Mohanvasi
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Scope creep might lead to Schedule creep. Change Control is the solution for both Scope and Schedule control
I'm not sure if integrated change control using any methodology can do much more then organize and frame change. Change is inevitable. Fixed schedules ae a moving targer.
Dec 30, 2015 1:53 AM
Replying to Venkatramvasi Mohanvasi
...
Scope creep might lead to Schedule creep. Change Control is the solution for both Scope and Schedule control
Well, exactly, I intended to mention Schedule Creep because if the scope changes in addition to the schedule and budget then it cannot be called scope creep any more. Scope creep happens when the scope of product is changed and the project budget and schedule remain unchanged.

As for change control, it can be a solution if you have a solid change control system and you tackle the issue while it is in the Scope Creep early phase but if it slips to Schedule / Budget Creep as well, then here comes the question, can you control it without collateral damage !?!
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1 reply by Steven Zachary
Dec 30, 2015 2:25 AM
Steven Zachary
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Are you saying, can you control the control system? Circular?
Dec 30, 2015 2:20 AM
Replying to Rami Kaibni
...
Well, exactly, I intended to mention Schedule Creep because if the scope changes in addition to the schedule and budget then it cannot be called scope creep any more. Scope creep happens when the scope of product is changed and the project budget and schedule remain unchanged.

As for change control, it can be a solution if you have a solid change control system and you tackle the issue while it is in the Scope Creep early phase but if it slips to Schedule / Budget Creep as well, then here comes the question, can you control it without collateral damage !?!
Are you saying, can you control the control system? Circular?
Dec 30, 2015 1:51 AM
Replying to Steven Zachary
...
Good question Rami,

I think the "if" is a "when".

Schedule creep is only as good as the project manager. I think the idea that the PM can control schedule creep is highly overrated. To a degree a PM can influence the schedule through some techniques. The ultimate result sometimes is out of the control of what current resources, or scope permits. Then it becomes a means of communication to stakeholders and renegotiation.

I've seen very advanced techniques try to address this. Ultimately it comes down to the PM skill and the individual circumstance.
Thanks Steven. I agree with what you've mentioned especially that sometimes creep happens due to interference from client so to avoid this, we can enhance communication management but other times it happens due to market conditions, technological advancements and if these changes remains uncontrolled then it will lead to creep.

You mentioned a golden sentence: "Schedule creep is only as good as the project manager."

I've experience this once (Not as a PM) but as part of the PM Team and we ended up doing a mitigation plan. We could not control the creep 100% but we minimized it as much as possible.
This is pretty much what I said above as well. When I said schedule creep is only as good as the PM, I meant to say, even an exceptional PM with advanced skills can only do so much. The influence from outside factors is sometimes too strong and WHEN that happens, the PM switches from schedule mitigation to communication. When I said this above I meant, there comes a point where the PM has no more tools to effectively address what will be scope creep and at that point it becomes a job for negotiation and communication with stakeholders.
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1 reply by Rami Kaibni
Dec 30, 2015 2:41 AM
Rami Kaibni
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I agree 100% with You - We are definitely on the same line here but do you think if creep got beyond scope and affected schedule and budget it can still be mitigated without any collateral damage or there will be some kind of damage. Just asking for your point of view from your experience.
Dec 30, 2015 2:33 AM
Replying to Steven Zachary
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This is pretty much what I said above as well. When I said schedule creep is only as good as the PM, I meant to say, even an exceptional PM with advanced skills can only do so much. The influence from outside factors is sometimes too strong and WHEN that happens, the PM switches from schedule mitigation to communication. When I said this above I meant, there comes a point where the PM has no more tools to effectively address what will be scope creep and at that point it becomes a job for negotiation and communication with stakeholders.
I agree 100% with You - We are definitely on the same line here but do you think if creep got beyond scope and affected schedule and budget it can still be mitigated without any collateral damage or there will be some kind of damage. Just asking for your point of view from your experience.
Could you clarify what you meant by "damage"?
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1 reply by Rami Kaibni
Dec 30, 2015 2:49 AM
Rami Kaibni
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I meant to say: Finish the project with extended time and over-budget. I am used to calling these damages, sorry for the confusion.
Dec 30, 2015 2:47 AM
Replying to Steven Zachary
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Could you clarify what you meant by "damage"?
I meant to say: Finish the project with extended time and over-budget. I am used to calling these damages, sorry for the confusion.
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1 reply by Steven Zachary
Dec 30, 2015 2:53 AM
Steven Zachary
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I think that if creep moves beyond scope it's a communication issue. You raise this. Firstly, talk to your BA. Does this map to business value identified in the requirements and backwards to the business case. You then take those findings to your sponsor. Do they accept the additional scope, despite your opinions one way or another.

When a decision has been made, you can flatten, stretch or double up on resources all you like. The scope has or has not been increased. You WILL need more money/resource and more time to do more work. Again, unless your one of those leaders who makes people want to work weekends on salary....;)
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