Project Scope Management

What is Project Scope Management

Project Scope Management includes the activities necessary to make sure that any particular project contains all and only required work to complete the project by achieving its objectives. This is a major knowledge area which is thoroughly followed, tracked and reviewed by the project team continuously since scope is considered one of the critical factors that the success of failure of a project relies on.

There are 6 major processes identified by PMBOK 5th Edition under project scope management knowledge area. They are as follows;

Plan Scope Management

This is the process of developing a plan on how the project activities / work / scope will be defined, validated, controlled and managed. Throughout the entire project, this plan guides the project management team on how to manage the scope of the project. This is a subsidiary plan of the Project Integration Management plan.

Collect Requirements

This process includes the activities to define, determine, manage and document the stakeholders’ needs and requirements to achieve the project objectives. This process segment consists of both the project scope as well as the product scope.

Define Scope

This includes the activities to develop a detailed description of the project and product. It’s important to execute this process carefully since it involves in declining the project boundaries of the project by defining which of the collected requirements will be included and excluded from the agreed project scope.

Create Work Breakdown Structure

This is another important activity defined under project scope management knowledge area. It subdivides the project work and deliverables into smaller, manageable components. The main objective of this process it to provide a more clear, structured vision of what needs to be done and delivered. This is also recognized as a ‘Team Building’ activity and it requires every team member to participate and define the work.

Validate Scope

Validate Scope functions on formalizing the process of accepting the completed project deliverables. It supports the project team to increase the probability of accepting the final product, service or the result by validating each deliverable.

Control Scope

This is the final process stated under project scope management. It monitors the status of the project and product scope handle the changes to the scope baseline. Controlling the project scope ensures that every change request and recommended corrective or preventive action to be undergone via the ‘Perform Integrated Change Control’ process. This is a mandatory process since changes to the project are inevitable and unavoidable, hence there should be some kind of a controlling mechanism to maintain the project scope without unnecessary deviations.

Below table shows under which Project Management Process Group the above processes are performed.

Initiating Planning Executing Monitoring and Controlling Closing
No Process  Performed 1. Plan Scope Management
2. Collect Requirements
3. Define Scope
4. Create WBS
No Process  Performed 1. Validate Scope
2. Control Scope
No Process  Performed

**Please note that each and every individual process mentioned above will be explained further separately.



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Project Integration Management

What is Project Integration Management

According to PMBOK (5th Edition), there are 10 knowledge areas that support the Project Management team to lead a project towards the success. Project Integration Management is the first knowledge area that should be possessed by the Project Management team to handle a project.

This knowledge area includes the processes, activities, tools and techniques required to successfully manage the Project Integration function. According to the project management context, integration includes characteristics and features of unification, consolidation, communication and integrative actions that are essential to control project execution through completion and meeting project requirements while satisfying stakeholders. (Source: PMBOK – 5th Edition)

There are 5 major functions identified by PMBOK to be looked into within the Project Integration Management knowledge area. They are;

Develop Project Charter

This is the process of developing a document that formally allows / authorizes the existence of a project and provides the project manager to apply organizational resources to project activities.

Develop Project Management Plan

This is the consolidation of all the subsidiary plans such as schedule, cost, scope, quality, etc… and integrating them into a complete and comprehensive project management plan. Apart from the main subsidiary plans, the main baseline plans also will be included.

Direct and Manage Project work

This is the main process of performing the activities stated under the project management plan and build the approved changes to achieve project objectives.

Monitor and Control Project work

It is the process of measuring the project progress and performance objectives as per the project management plan. It continuously tracks and reviews the project status and supports the project management team to bring the project to its expected status if there are any deviations. (Corrective actions, preventive actions and defect repair)

Perform Integrated Change Control

This is a critical process that involves in reviewing all change requests and sending them through an approval / rejection process. It also is related to managing changes to the deliverables,  organizational process assets, project documents and project management as well.

Close Project or Phase

This is the final process of the Project Integration Management knowledge area. It involves in finalizing all the project activities and formally completing the project or phase.

Below table shows under which Project Management Process Group the above processes are performed.

Initiating Planning Executing Monitoring and Controlling Closing
Develop Project
Develop Project
Management Plan
Direct and Manage
Project Work
1. Monitor and Control Project Work
2. Perform Integrated Change Control
Close Project / Phase


**Please note that each and every individual process mentioned above will be explained further separately.

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Project Management Processes

Project Management Processes

The Project Management Processes make sure of an efficient and steady flow of the project throughout its entire life cycle. The defined processes include tools and techniques needed to apply the skills and abilities under the 10 knowledge areas (The process groups will be discussed further under the knowledge areas). There are 5 basic project management processes (Process Groups) defined by PMBOK (5th Edition)

  1. Initiating Process Group
  2. Planning Process Group
  3. Executing Process Group
  4. Monitoring and Controlling Process Group
  5. Closing Process Group


Process Group Map
Process Group Map

Initiating Process Group

This process group contains the processes stated to define a new project or a new phase of an existing project by receiving the authority to initiate the project. Under this process group, the initial scope of the project is defined. Initial internal and external stakeholders are identified. The project manager will be selected to handle the project. In order to handover the authority of the project to the selected project manager, the project charter will be prepared.

Planning Process Group

This process group consists of the processes required to find out the total scope of the effort to complete the project (Scope, Schedule, Cost) and develop the relevant actions necessary to achieve the project objectives. The planning process group will develop the project management plan that includes all the required documents to carry out the project. While the project is being carried out, this plan will be changed accordingly. This process is known as ‘Progressing Elaboration’ stating that the planning and documentations are iterative and ongoing tasks. Under the project management plan, all the 10 knowledge areas will be covered.

Executing Process Group

The executing process group includes the activities that need to be carried out to complete the work defined in the project management plan to achieve the project objectives. The most of the project budget and schedule will need to be spent under this process group. Apart from the main tasks, the change requests to baseline the project towards its objectives (corrective actions, preventive actions and defect repairs) will also require to be looked into.

Monitoring and Controlling Process Group

This process group is considered one of the most important process groups in Project Management. It includes the processes to track the progress and performance of the project. In addition, it also supports the project management team to identify any variances between the planned and actual and re-baseline the project plan to bring the project towards the expected level. The continuous monitoring of the project always helps to keep the project under a healthy status while producing a error-free final product.

Closing Process Group

This is the final process of a project which contains the activities to conclude and formally close the project, phase or the contractual obligations. This also includes establishing the premature closure of the project. (Cancelled / aborted projects, projects with critical conditions) At the time of closing the project, a formal acceptance from the customer is required. And the lessons learned throughout the project life-cycle need to be documented for future use. All the agreements need to be signed off and formally closed. Assess the team members’ performances and release the project resources accordingly.

Below figure explains how the process groups interact in a project / phase.

Process Group Interaction (Source: PMBOK 5th Edition)
Process Group Interaction (Source: PMBOK 5th Edition)
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Organizational Structure on Project Management

Organizational Structure influencing on Project Management

Organizational Structure is a key element that can have a straight / direct impact towards the success of projects. The structure differs from organization to organization and based on the structure, the project management methodology also differs. PMI has identified the organizational structure as an enterprise environment factor that can affect on how the projects need to be conducted. Therefore, according to different organizations, few structures have been identified and categorized under three structural level. They are;

  • Functional
  • Matrix (Weak, Balanced and Strong)
  • Projectized

Functional Organization

These organizations function under different functional level leads such as marketing, finance, human resource, operations, etc… Each department will work on their project tasks independently from other units / departments.

Functional Organization

Matrix Organization

These organizational structures reflect a combination of both functional and projectized environments. It has been classified under three different level which are weak, balanced and strong matrix structures based on the authority, power and influence level between the functional and project managers.

Weak Matrix Organization

This structure follows most of the characteristics of a functional structure. Also the level of a project manager is at a coordinator / expediter level which is very low and cannot make decisions.

weak matrix
Weak Matrix Organization

Balanced Matrix Organization

This structure recognizes the need of a project manager, yet it doesn’t provide the full authority to the respective project manager.

balanced matrix
Balanced Matrix Organization

Strong Matrix Organization

This structure has most of the projectized environmental features and have full-time project managers with more authority level.

strong matrix
Strong Matrix Organization

Projectized Organization

This acts as the complete opposite of the functional structure where the organization functions under project managers who have a great deal of authority and most of the resources are involved in projects’ activities.

Projectized Organization

Refer below comparison among the identified structures which are compared under three factors namely;

  1. The role of the Project Manager
  2. The authority level of the Project Manager
  3. Resources Availability


Comparison – Organizational Structure
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What is Project Management

What Is ‘Project Management?’

‘Project Management’ is the application of knowledge, skills, tools and techniques into project activities to meet the requirements identified by a particular project. (PMBOK 5th Edition) There are 47 processes which are grouped under 5 main categories. They are:

  • Initiating
  • Planning
  • Executing
  • Monitoring and Controlling
  • Closing

No matter what the industry a particular project needs to be built is, these 5 processes need to be executed in order to complete the project successfully.

There are few constraints that need to be managed in order to drive a project towards its success. They are:

  • Scope of the project
  • Schedule of the project
  • Cost of the project
  • Quality of the project

In addition to the above main 4 factors, there are 2 other factors that also need attention. They are:

  • Risks of the project
  • Available resources of the project

The main 4 constraints have been identified as the ‘Iron Triangle’ of a project since they are mandatory / essential factors that need to be maintained under their respective limits in order to measure the success of the project.



Each of these factors are linked with each other. Therefore, if one of them is changed, it will affect towards the other factors. Hence, it’s necessary to keep the track of each factor to maintain the project under the agreed values.

E.g.: If the client comes up with a change to the scope, the project team will require more time to do the new change which will add a cost to the project.

Due to the higher probability of changes in the project requirements, development of the project management plan has become a progressively elaborated process which proceeds throughout the entire project life-cycle. This ‘progressive elaboration’ helps the project team to define project activities into much more detailed requirements as the project evolves.

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