Perpetual State of Scope Creep

Question"I think that we are in a perpetual state of scope creep with a never ending stream of tickets. My colleagues say I am wrong. I need your help to better articulate my position."

Scope creep is an ongoing and undesired situation where uncontrolled modifications, mostly additions, are made to the product's feature set. Scope creep occurs when the product's feature set is not fully defined or not fully documented, or not properly controlled for versioning or prioritization.

The adverse effect is that the product release date is constantly being postponed and there is a continuous demand for more budget and resources.

A major risk is the need to fundamentally modify the system architecture because of newly discovered and critical functionality that must be added.

Reasons for scope creep:

  • Product development adds features without being asked to do so.
  • Product management does not have a true understanding of the market problem, and routinely adds features.

If the development method is discovery-based, then by-design the feature set constantly grows.

Dealing with scope creep is covered in the Procedural Requirements Management™ (PRM) course module.