Scope creep


Scope creep

Scope creep (also called focus creep, requirement creep, feature creep, and sometimes kitchen sink syndrome) in project management refers to uncontrolled changes in a project's scope. This phenomenon can occur when the scope of a project is not properly defined, documented, or controlled. It is generally considered a negative occurrence that is to be avoided.

Typically, the scope increase consists of either new products or new features of already approved product designs, without corresponding increases in resources, schedule, or budget. As a result, the project team risks drifting away from its original purpose and scope into unplanned additions. As the scope of a project grows, more tasks must be completed within the budget and schedule originally designed for a smaller set of tasks. Thus, scope creep can result in a project team overrunning its original budget and schedule.

If the budget and schedule are increased along with the scope, the change is usually considered an acceptable addition to the project, and the term “scope creep” is not used.

Scope creep can be a result of:
* disingenuous customer with a determined value for free policy
* poor change control
* lack of proper initial identification of what is required to bring about the project objectives
* weak project manager or executive sponsor
* poor communication between parties
* Agile software development, based on subjective quantifications.

Scope creep is a risk in most projects. Most megaprojects fall victim to scope creep (see Megaprojects and risk). Scope creep often results in cost overrun. A value for free strategy is difficult to counteract and remains a difficult challenge for even the most experienced project managers.

ee also

*Project management
*Cost overrun
*Creep (project management)
*Instruction creep
*Featuritis
*Megaproject
*Megaprojects and risk
*Mission creep
*Software bloat

References

* [http://maxwideman.com/pmglossary/PMG_S01.htm Wideman Comparative Glossary of Project Management Terms] by R. Max Wideman P.Eng. FCSCE, FEIC, FICE, Fellow PMI

External links

* [http://www.pmhut.com/?s=%22Scope+Creep+Part%22 A Comprehensive Series on Scope Creep]
* [http://www.visionarytools.com/decision-making/incomplete-contracts-scope-creep.htm The Creeping Scope - How Accurate can Project Documentation be?]


Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • scope creep — noun Frequent and uncontrolled changes in the scope or requirements of a project …   Wiktionary

  • feature/scope creep — n. The temptation to add more and more features to a product release until it becomes a confused mass of incongruous elements, twisted and evil …   Business English jargon and slang

  • Creep (project management) — Creep (as in functionality creep, feature creep, mission creep and scope creep) is a problem in project management where the initial objectives of the project are jeopardized by a gradual increase in overall objectives as the project progresses.… …   Wikipedia

  • Scope (project management) — In project management, the scope of a project is the sum total of all of its products and their requirements or features.Fact|date=March 2008Sometimes the term scope is used to mean the totality of work needed to complete a project. In… …   Wikipedia

  • Scope — A project management term for the combined objectives and requirements necessary to complete a project. Properly defining the scope of a project allows a manager to estimate costs and the time required to finish the project. Scope can involve a… …   Investment dictionary

  • Feature creep — For the project management concept, see scope creep. Feature creep, creeping featurism or featureitis is the ongoing expansion or addition of new features in a product, such as in computer software.[1] Extra features go beyond the basic function… …   Wikipedia

  • Mission creep — is the expansion of a project or mission beyond its original goals, often after initial successes.[1] Mission creep is usually considered undesirable due to the dangerous path of each success breeding more ambitious attempts, only stopping when a …   Wikipedia

  • Instruction creep — occurs when instructions increase in number and size over time until they are unmanageable. It can be insidious and damaging to the success of large groups such as corporations, originating from ignorance of the KISS principle and resulting in… …   Wikipedia

  • mission creep — noun Gradual expansion of the objectives, scope, and/or cost of a military mission without careful planning. Initially presented as a purely humanitarian mission, Operation Restore Hope gradually shifted from feeding Somalis to fighting them.… …   Wiktionary

  • Telescopic sight — Scope redirects here. For other uses, see Scope (disambiguation). View through a 4x rifle scope. A telescopic sight, commonly called a scope, is a sighting device that is based on an optical refracting telescope. They are equipped with some form… …   Wikipedia


Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.