An Insight into Scope Statement in Project Management

A scope statement is created to establish a precise and concrete agreement between the project delivery team and the customer regarding the project’s objectives. It helps clarify, identify and relate the work of the project to the objectives of the business owner. A scope statement that is well defined is a critical aid to the Project Manager to make wise decisions in the lifecycle of the project.



A complete Scope Statement will include project charter, stakeholders and justification details of Project, description of the end Product, the deliverables, the cost estimates, the project scope exclusions or non goals and the overall ultimate objective. It has to be reviewed and approved by the appropriate stakeholders. It should not contain very confidential information regarding the financial aspects.

The first steps on creating a scope statement starts off with the project name, project charter and listing the corresponding stakeholders. The Project Charter consists of a statement defining scope, the objectives and participants in the project. It serves as a reference of authority.

The purpose of this is to document the reasons or justifications of the project, to outline objectives and constraints and directions concerning the solution. The Stakeholders are the project owners, sponsors and project team. The Project Charter information may be replicated in Scope statement as a summary or a link could be created separately to it in Scope Statement document.

The Project justification consists of doing a reality check and determining if the project makes sense. The project could be about a problem to be resolved, an opportunity that is required to be exploited or a benefit that is to be gained.

Examples of Project justification are Business Requirement, Request of Customer, Advances in Technology, Legal Requirement or Demand in Market. A feasibility study can be done to consider the Implementation alternatives, to determine and assess the economic, technical, operational or political feasibility and to provide quantitative and qualitative measures to motivate stakeholders.

Next the project requirements, deliverables, project completion criteria have to be identified. The requirements consist of the objectives and goals and could include significant milestones. The deliverables need to be agreed upon by the stakeholders and if required tagged to specific milestones while creating the project schedule.

Identifying non goals that are items that will not be addressed by the current project will help to reduce the scope creep at a later stage in the project life cycle. The constraints, assumptions and external dependencies associated with the project may also be included.

The Project approach to Issue Management and Change Management processes may also be briefly explained. The Project approach to Communication, Procurement and Resource management will be explained in terms of strategies followed, the plan and what it would consist of.

Cost estimates for the project such as the project’s expected overall cost are also included in the scope statement. A greater level of accuracy of the estimated cost will prevent the project from being over budgeted or to be given high allocation of resources unnecessarily.

The approval requirements and formal acceptance signatures form a significant aspect of the scope statement. The last minute discrepancies can be cleared up and a satisfactory level of mutual agreement can be reached among the important stakeholders like the Project Sponsors, Business Owners, Project team etc.
It can be concluded that a well clearly defined scope statement created with extreme care will lay the foundation for a successful project.

 



 

 

 

 

 

 


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