PMP Certification Exam Prep – Project Scope Management 101


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Project Scope Management is the second knowledge area of project management.

It includes a group of processes that define and control what is and is not included in the project.

Based on chapter 5 of PMBOK® Guide 5th Edition, here you will find:

  • project management graphic of Project Scope Management, a quick reference guide to its definition and processes
  • Project Scope Management WHATs, WHYs, WHENs, and HOWs — by Project Scope Management processes

Read on!

Project SCOPE Management 101 – by Project Management Process Group

Icon titled Project Scope Management 101 Planning Processes Tipsographic1. Plan Scope Management

  • WHAT Plan Scope Management Is. In the Plan Scope Management process a project manager plans out all of the work necessary to define the project scope, make sure the team is planning to do the right work, and control it.
  • WHY Plan Scope Management Is Important. The Plan Scope Management process helps project managers to think through everything they will need to do to keep the project focused on the right work, from beginning to end.
  • WHEN Plan Scope Management Is Executed. Although Plan Scope Management is the first process in the Project Scope Management Knowledge Area, a project manager can develop the scope management plan—one of its two outputs, together with the requirements management plan— in iterative stages during project planning. Indeed, the scope management plan is part of the project management plan, which is an input, in its turn, into the Plan Scope Management process.
  • HOW Plan Scope Management Operates.
InputsTools and techniquesOutputs
  1. Project management plan
  2. Project charter
  3. Enterprise environmental factors
  4. Organizational process assets
  1. Expert judgment
  2. Meetings
  1. Scope management plan
  2. Requirements management plan

Source: PMBOK® Guide, 5th ed., Chapter 5, section 5.1, p. 107.

2. Collect Requirements

  • WHAT Collect Requirements Is. The Collect Requirements process turns the needs of the project stakeholders into requirements, characteristics of the project deliverables.
  • WHY Collect Requirements Is Important. In the Collect Requirements process, a project manager identifies what the final product or service of the project—deliverables— will look like.
  • WHEN Collect Requirements Is Executed. The requirements-gathering process is used prior to completing the scope statement.
  • HOW Collect Requirements Operates.
InputsTools and techniquesOutputs
  1. Scope management plan
  2. Requirements management plan
  3. Stakeholder management plan
  4. Project charter
  5. Stakeholder register
  1. Interviews
  2. Focus groups
  3. Facilitated workshops
  4. Group creativity techniques
  5. Group decision-making techniques
  6. Questionnaires and surveys
  7. Observations
  8. Prototypes
  9. Benchmarking
  10. Context diagrams
  11. Document analysis
  1. Requirements documentation
  2. Requirements traceability matrix

Source: PMBOK® Guide, 5th ed., Chapter 5, section 5.2, p. 111.

3. Define Scope

  • WHAT Define Scope Is. The Define Scope process understands and documents in detail the scope of the project, creating the project scope statement.
  • WHY Define Scope Is Important. The precision and completeness of scope definition is crucial to the success of the project. Conversely, an undocumented scope might lead to scope creep or/and gold plating.
  • WHEN Define Scope Is Executed. The Define Scope process selects the final project requirements from the project requirements list generated during the Collect Requirements process. Due to the iterative nature of these two processes, scope and requirements are progressively elaborated in a loop as more detail becomes known.
  • HOW Define Scope Operates.
InputsTools and techniquesOutputs
  1. Scope management plan
  2. Project charter
  3. Requirements documentation
  4. Organizational process assets
  1. Expert judgment
  2. Product analysis
  3. Alternatives generation
  4. Facilitated workshops
  1. Project scope statement
  2. Project documents updates

Source: PMBOK® Guide, 5th ed., Chapter 5, section 5.3, p. 120.

4. Create Work Breakdown Structure

  • WHAT Create Work Breakdown Structure Is. Create Work Breakdown Structure (WBS) is the process of taking the deliverables listed in the scope statement and subdividing them into smaller components. It’s where a project manager actually identifies all the work needed in the project.
  • WHY Create Work Breakdown Structure Is Important. The Create Work Breakdown Structure is a critical process of planning since much of the other work in planning is based on the WBS.
  • WHEN Create Work Breakdown Structure Is Executed. The Create Work Breakdown Structure process begins after a process manager has collected requirements and defined scope.
  • HOW Create Work Breakdown Structure Operates.
InputsTools and techniquesOutputs
  1. Scope management plan
  2. Project scope statement
  3. Requirements documentation
  4. Enterprise environmental factors
  5. Organizational process assets
  1. Decomposition
  2. Expert judgment
  1. Scope baseline
  2. Project document updates

Source: PMBOK® Guide, 5th ed., Chapter 5, section 5.4, p. 125.

Icon titled Project Scope Management 101 Monitoring Controlling Processes Tipsographic5. Validate Scope

  • WHAT Validate Scope Is. A project manager implements the Validate Scope process to obtain written confirmation—formal sign-off—from all of the stakeholders that the deliverables match the requirements and the Project Management plan—formal acceptance.
  • WHY Validate Scope Is Important. The Validate Scope process formalizes the acceptance of the project scope by the stakeholders.
  • WHEN Validate Scope Is Executed. Validate Scope is usually the last Scope Management process that a project manager does in a project, as the product is delivered. Moreover, a project manager validates scope with the customer also at the end of each project phase, or whenever he/she needs the formal acceptance of any deliverable.
  • HOW Validate Scope Operates.
InputsTools and techniquesOutputs
  1. Project management plan
  2. Requirements documentation
  3. Requirements traceability matrix
  4. Verified deliverables
  5. Work performance data
  1. Inspection
  2. Group decision-making techniques
  1. Accepted deliverables
  2. Change requests
  3. Work performance information
  4. Project documents updates

Source: PMBOK® Guide, 5th ed., Chapter 5, section 5.5, p. 133.

6. Control Scope

  • WHAT Control Scope Is. As a result of the Control Scope process, a project manager updates the scope, plan, baseline, and WBS info with any approved and documented modification to the project and product scope.
  • WHY Control Scope Is Important. The Control Scope process prevents uncontrolled changes to the project scope, i.e. scope creep, by measuring and assessing work performance data against the scope baseline.
  • WHEN Control Scope Is Executed. A project manager performs Control Scope anytime scope changes are requested since the scope baseline has been created.
  • HOW Control Scope Operates.
InputsTools and techniquesOutputs
  1. Project management plan
  2. Requirements documentation
  3. Requirements traceability matrix
  4. Work performance data
  5. Organizational process assets
  1. Variance analysis
  1. Work performance information
  2. Change requests
  3. Project management plan updates
  4. Project documents updates
  5. Organizational process assets updates

Source: PMBOK® Guide, 5th ed., Chapter 5, section 5.6, p. 136.

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