According to Portny, Mantel, Meredith, Shafer, Sutton, and Kramer (2008), “Scope Creep” is the natural tendency of the client, as well as project team members, to try to improve the project’s output as the project progresses.” I experienced scope creep when I was trying to implement a new Staff Development online portal for my school system. This system would allow teachers and paraprofessionals to enter leave requests, field trips and fund raising request online and also track their professional development hours.
When the project started, there were many basic reports that were already built I, however as I started implementing and entering all of the data I soon realized that there were many improvements that could be made to make the project more user friendly and tweak it more for the needs of the users.
As each step of the project was implemented, I asked for changes that I thought would be beneficial which only delayed the project. We finally agreed to just go ahead and implement the program so that we could use it and make the changes after the fact. The bad part of this is that after three years, I’m still waiting on some changes to forms and reports that I use on a daily basis.
Scope creep is sometimes unavoidable, according to Portny, et al (2008); however, the impact of the pain scope creep causes can be reduced if monitored and controlled.
Portny, S., Mantel, S., Meredith, J., Shafer, S., Sutton, M., & Kramer, B. (2008). Project management: Planning, scheduling, and controlling projects. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.