The cost of change
Change in scope easily ranks among the top issues that keep project managers awake at night. At the project's launch, the scope, schedule and budget are determined and then somewhere during the course of the project, someone changes the scope. This article discusses how project managers can secure more funding and time to accomplish the additional work. It begins by exploring the change document and identifies an extremely important question: Is the proposed change financially justified? It then explains how a change in project scope is actually a separate investment decision and notes that the process for evaluating whether it is financially justified is straightforward. The article explores how scope change requires an additional expenditure, will delay the project's completion and make the benefits streams delivered by that project late. It then challenges project practitioners to answer this question: Will the increase in economic benefits brought about by the scope change exceed this negative impact?