Out of scope is work that is beyond the current scope of a program, project or initiative. The following are common examples.A project charter or a similar document may specifically list things that are out of scope. This is done to set expectations and document decisions that have been made. When a change is requested that was listed as out of scope in a project charter, the project may require significant analysis and a reset of schedule, cost and contract terms.
A project has three types of baseline: scope, schedule and cost. Changes to scope typically require adjustments to schedule and cost.
FeasibilityChanges to scope may impact the feasibility of a project. As an example, a requirement to make a machine more energy efficient may require different materials and a complete rework of a design starting with a feasibility study. In other words, out of scope changes can effectively derail a project.
Benefit RealizationIt is common for a project to begin with a business case that promises a number of business benefits and a return on investment. Out of scope changes may impact return on investment. For example, it is common for a large number of changes to escalate the cost of a project such that returns are negative. This can result in the perception that a project failed even if the project team delivers to expectations.
NotesIt is good practice to list an potential changes that might derail a project as out of scope in project charters, requirements and definitions of baseline scope.
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