Verifying the Project Scope

According to the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK) guide published by the Project Management Institute (PMI), Verify Scope is an important process. As the process name indicates, verify scope does not mean that you make sure that you have correct scope of the project during the planning phase. However, you use this process to make sure that you get a formal acceptance of the scope from the stakeholders of the project. The verify scope process might need you to plan frequent meetings with the stakeholders, such as project sponsors and customers, to get a formal acceptance on the deliverables during the monitoring and controlling phases of the project management.

The verify scope process enables you to make sure that the customer understands that the project is on track even when work is in progress on the project, instead of waiting for the acceptance at the end of the project during the project closure phase. It is always better for you to identify changes and issues, if any, when work for the project is in progress instead of finding these at the end of the project life cycle when looking for the project closure. This not only saves on your project time and efforts, but also makes sure that the stakeholders are on the same page, and are updated on the status of the project and its deliverables. As a result, it gives you an opportunity to get the acceptance of the stakeholders on the deliverables or get a change request well in time.

Whether it is acceptance of the deliverables or change request, you must update the documents of the project to indicate the completion of the deliverables or change request for the deliverables. This indicates that the verify scope process has three outputs – acceptance for the deliverables, request for changes to the deliverables, and updates to the project documents.

It is not necessary for you to wait till the end of the life cycle of the project or even the deliverable to verify the scope. You can run this process at the end of every phase of the project life cycle, including the monitoring as well as controlling process groups of the project management. This makes sure that you verify the deliverables of each phase when work is in progress. Additionally, it is not necessary that you verify scope only once during the project life cycle. Instead, you should do so multiple times during the project life cycle. You must keep in mind that the acceptance during the verify scope process is the formal acceptance only for the interim deliverables. However, you get the final acceptance of the complete project as a part of the formal acceptance and sign offs of the project deliverables during the project closure phase.

You must also run the verify scope process after the Perform Quality Control process. In the perform quality control process, you make sure that the product meets the quality standards, as agreed upon for the deliverables. However, with the verify scope process, you make sure that the customer checks the deliverable and formally accepts it. Even though both the processes check the quality of the deliverables, the difference between the two is based on who performs the quality check. While quality check is done by an internal team in case of the perform quality control process, the customer checks the quality of the deliverables in case of the verify scope process. After checking the deliverables, the customer either accepts the deliverables or requests for a change. The cycle continues until the customer formally accepts the deliverables.