When talking about requirements scope statements, it’s impossible not to mention project scope statements. These two types of scope statements can be confusing and it’s often difficult to distinguish one from the other. In reality however, the line between project scope statements and requirements scope statements can be defined.
Project scope statements describe major project objectives, which should include measurable success criteria, and, in doing so, establish clear boundaries inside which all requirements (and requirements scope statements) must be contained. Changing project scope statements is frowned upon because it can introduce changes to requirements, project cost, delivery time, quality, and available resources.
Requirements scope statements are defined later in the project life cycle and are relatively fluid. As long as they still fall within the boundaries set by project scope statements, they can be updated and modified to reflect the changing needs of the project.
The benefits of clearly defined requirements scope statements include:
- Clarity: Requirements scope statements enhance clarity by providing a basis for high-level estimates of the effort needed to create the deliverables associated with it.
- Assurance: Requirements scope statements aid objective completion by enabling the discussion to assess variances between requirements and actual outcomes.
The definition of a requirements scope statement should include <who> must do <what> to accomplish <which goal>.
The scope statement can be seen as a definition of the project and what it is expected to accomplish. According to the PMBOK guide, it should contain a description of the constraints, assumptions, deliverables, acceptance criteria and the scope of the product or solution. The scope statement serves not only as a guide for project managers but also provides a starting point for business analysts to locate information about the project.