Today’s business technology is both powerful and restive. No matter how “feature rich” a software solution or hardware asset may be, there’s always another upgrade around the corner. In other words, it’s just a matter of time before your company’s next IT project.
When that day arrives, watch out for “scope creep.” This term refers to the tendency of a project’s objective (or “scope”) to gradually expand while the job is underway. As a result, the schedule may drag and dollars may go to waste.
A variety of things can cause scope creep. In many cases, too few users give input during the planning stage. Or misunderstandings may occur between the project team and users, obscuring the purpose of the job.
Excessive implementation time undoes many projects as well. As weeks and months go by, business processes, policies and priorities tend to change. For a new system to meet the needs of the business, the project’s scope needs to be executable within a reasonable time frame.
Ineffective project management is another common culprit. Scope creep often arises when a project manager underestimates the complexity of the tasks at hand or fails to adequately motivate his or her team.
To stop or at least minimize scope creep, follow these five steps:
Improving your company’s technology should be cause for excitement and, eventually, celebration. Unfortunately, it too often brings anxiety and conflict. Tackling scope creep head on can help ensure that your IT projects go more smoothly. Our firm can help you assess the financial impact of any technology solution you’re considering and, if you decide to proceed, set a budget for the job.
BG Advisors CPA is a full service CPA firm committed to helping growing businesses reach their goals. Combining decades of diverse corporate, finance and tax experience allows us to bring world-class expertise to every client we serve.