How to create a Scope Management Plan?

Project Management


One of the main reasons why a project fails is primarily because of the scope issues. It’s imperative that all projects need a scope management plan. In the absence of a scope management plan, project stakeholders tend to assume that, the project is their favor and this will result in unexpected outcomes. The main objective of the project manager is to ensure that the project runs smoothly and to do that, he/she has to establish and define the project’s scope well.

Definition of Scope Management Plan

The Scope Management Plan is the collection of processes that are used to ensure that the project includes all the tasks required to complete the project while excluding all the work/tasks that are out of scope. The primary purpose of the Scope Management plan is to define how the project scope will be explained, developed/structured, and verified.

The processes that are required to create a ‘Scope Management Plan’ are as follows :


  1. Project Charter

    The project charter which defines the statement of objectives in a project, like, setting project goals, roles and responsibilities, identifying stakeholders is used to provide the project framework required to plan the scope management process. The project charter provides the high-level project description and product characteristics from the project statement of work.

  2. Project Management Plan

    The subsidiary plans that are listed under the project management plan are used to create the scope management plan and will influence the approach taken for planning and managing project scope. The project management plan works as a baseline that describes the importance of creating a scope management plan for a project. Without incorporating useful guidelines and methods to achieve the project deliverables, a project will stumble upon a roadblock.

    1. Quality Management Plan

      Managing the project and product scope can be primarily influenced by how the organization’s quality policy, methodologies, and standards are implemented on the project.

    2. Project life cycle Description

      Project lifecycle is nothing but the process that describes the phases or stages that the project has gone through starting from the initiation stage to the project closure stage.

    3. Development Approach

      The development approach defines and determines whether or not the project manager will implement waterfall, iterative, adaptive, agile, or a hybrid development approach.

  3. Enterprise Environmental Factors

    Enterprise environmental factors are considered inputs to most planning processes. Under the EEF’s the project management options may be enhanced or constrained resulting in a positive or an adverse outcome.

    1. Organization’s Culture

      Many times the outcome of the project can be judged based on the organization’s culture. If in case, the organization is functioning under a productive work culture, then the project has high chances of achieving the desired objective with the implementation of explicit scope management. On the contrary, if there is a mixed or ineffective work culture, then the chances of a project succeeding is minimal regardless of a proper scope management plan.

    2. Infrastructure

      Infrastructure plays an essential role in defining the success of implementing a scope management plan for a project. The reason being that the existing facilities and the equipment used in the organization have to be of high standards to meet the expectations defined in the project management plan by the stakeholders. If the project manager moves forward with inadequate infrastructure, then it could result in producing deliverables below the required standards.

    3. Personnel administration

      Based on the policies and administrative guidelines that exist in the organization, the project manager can define the performance of the scope management plan. For example, when the company has proper staffing and retention policies to retain those well qualified and trained employees, who have experience in executing, monitoring and closing a project, it is bound to realize the importance and utilize the scope management plan to its highest capabilities. Likewise, if it has the personnel, who are inexperienced or not well trained, then it will seriously take a toll on the performance of a project.

    4. Marketplace conditions

      The concept of marketplace conditions is also a vital aspect that defines the scope management plan, as it allows the project manager to know his competitors in the market, the market growth rate, and also the intensity of competitiveness that exists in the current market. Only when all these are taken into consideration, can the project manager define and execute an effective scope management plan.

  4. Organizational Process Assets

    The Organizational Process Assets are categorized into two types, namely ;

    1. Processes and Procedures

      The essential features of Processes and Procedures are – Initiation, Planning, Executing, Monitoring and Controlling and Closing. A successful project always inherits these procedures and processes, as they are crucial to keeping track of all the proceeding taking place during the lifecycle of the project. Thus, the project manager while implementing the scope management plan should consider these important aspects.

    2. Corporate Knowledge Base

      The corporate knowledge base includes information based on the following features to determine and draft a scope management plan.

      1. Configuration management knowledge bases – Provides information on the organization standards, policies, procedures and project documents.

      2. Financial databases – Provides information on the allocated budgets, cost overshoots, incurred costs and labor hours.

      3. Historical information and lessons learned knowledge bases – Provides information on the project records and documents, project closure information, it will also showcase the project selection process and project performance witnessed during the previous projects.

      4. Issue and defect management databases – Providing information on the issues and defects that occurred during the previous project execution and also sharing the outcomes of the actions taken to tackle these issues.

      5. Process measurement databases – Providing information on the methods and tools used to measure the performance of the previous project to compare them with the undertaken project to assess their performance.

      6. Project files from previous projects – Collecting valuable data of the prior project files – from the scope, cost, time and performance baselines that were levied for the previous project.

      All the above-furnished information will allow the project manager to create an effective scope management plan.

Tools and Techniques of Scope Management Plan

  1. Expert Judgment

    To ensure that the project manager creates an effective scope management plan, he/she has to collect inputs from subject matter experts and stakeholders as to what valuable insights that they would like the project manager to implement in the plan. This process will provide accurate details of how to handle obstacles and issues if any arises, as it also collects details from professionals who have been trained in developing scope management plans.

  2. Data Analysis

    A data analysis technique that can be used for scope management plan includes – various ways of collecting project requirements, elaborating the project and product scope, creating the product, validating the project scope, and finally controlling the project scope.

  3. Meetings

    Meeting that includes attendees like project managers, the project sponsor, selected project team members, selected stakeholders will discuss and finalize the aspects required to define the scope management plan.


  1. Scope Management Plan

    The scope management plan is a component of the project or program management plan that describes how the scope will be defined, developed, monitored, controlled, and verified. The scope management plan is a significant input into the Develop Project Management Plan process and the other scope management processes.

    The scope management plan is a major input into the Develop Project management process, as it is a component of the project management plan that describes how the scope will be defined, developed, monitored, controlled and verified.

    The components of the scope management plan include;

    1. Process to prepare a detailed project scope statement

    2. The process that allows creating WBS from the detailed project scope statement

    3. The process that establishes how the WBS will be maintained and approved

    4. The process that explains how formal acceptance of completed project deliverables are to be obtained

    5. The process to control the requests for changes to the detailed project scope statement will be documented.

    Based on the needs of the project, the scope management plan can be broadly framed or highly detailed or either can be formal or informal.

  2. Requirements Management Plan

    A process that describes how the project requirements will be analyzed, documented and managed. The rightly chooses the most effective relationship for the project and documents the approach in the requirements management plan.

    The main components of requirements management plan focuses on;

    1. How the requirement activities are planned, tracked, and reported.

    2. How the changes to the product will be initiated.

    3. The procedures required for analyzing the impacts, and methods used to trace and report the issues.

    4. Getting details of the authorization levels that are required to approve the changes made.

    5. The conditions required to rank the implemented processes.

    6. Focusing on why and how the product metrics are being used.

    7. Traceability structure to reflect which requirement features will be captured on the traceability matrix.

The Scope management plan is an excellent management tool that is used to effectively handling and adjusting to a project’s essential baselines and activities to ensure that they align with the agreed guidelines to accomplish the required objectives.

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