Risk Mapping to Primary Constraints: Scope – the Work Effort

As we have discussed in our “time” constraints mapping, all projects/program/portfolios regardless of size or complexity need to ensure the balance between primary constraints is maintained in order to produce the fundamental quality outcome of a project. We call this fundamental quality concept the production of “fit-for-use” deliverables. At MCLMG, we have developed this entire mapping and many other innovative project management concepts in our Deliverable-Centered Project Management (DCPM) architecture.

Parameters:  Project deliverables, Project charter, work breakdown structure (WBS), lessons-learned, historical archives, stakeholder analysis

Determinations: risk-adjusted WBS work packages

One of the earliest artifacts on your project will be the project scope which will support the creation of the project scope statement.  The scope management phase will produce the deliverables and the “fit-for-use” criteria the project will need to achieve customer sign-off by the end of your project. This phase also helps the project manager ensure and communicate the work defined in the WBS and ultimately the project schedule is actually being executed to the level of quality demanded by the project sponsor and/or customer.

To achieve the definition of the project deliverables and the quality metrics, the project team begins stakeholder analysis by completing in-depth interviews to define the project requirements. The project business analyst, if this role is assigned, should be the premier team member involved in uncovering the stakeholder’s expectations and deliverable quality metrics. The outcome of the stakeholder analysis is the draft WBS which can be further refined as the business analyst clarifies the “fit-for-use” criteria discovered during stakeholder interaction.

With the WBS in draft form, the mapping of risks and issues, now being identified during the same stakeholder interaction that defined the deliverables and quality criteria, can begin as each WBS element is further broken down into its lowest form for work effort assignment and execution, i.e., the WBS work package. Mapping risks and issues to each of the WBS work packages, determining the risk expected value (REV), calculating the risk impact deviations, and issue response profiles (costs and schedule) can be achieved to provide the clarification of risk-adjusted decision making defined as a significant benefit of implementing risk to constraint mapping.

At this step, scope verification can now begin. In current project management “body of knowledge” dissertations, scope verification does not occur until the very end of a project with the formal acceptance of the deliverables. We assert that waiting until the end to verify the scope is in and of itself a major risk to the project. Scope verification at MCLMG’s clients occurs when the business sponsor accepts the risk-adjusted WBS and the quality metrics for producing “fit-for-use” deliverables after completing a formal walk-through and/or inspection of the WBS, risk register, issues log, and quality metrics profile. This completes the scope management initialization processes with the dissemination of the approved risk-adjusted WBS (work packages, and database) and the associated risk register and issues log.

Finally and of equal importance, no project or program can exist without the possibility of change; thus, any requested or needed changes to the project scope must go through a formal change control management process.

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