During any of the projects, you may come across different workload conditions. Sometimes, you accomplish goals so easily. But most of the time it becomes so difficult and hectic to complete a single task. You might be undergoing a scope creep trap.
These hurdles could cause depending upon several steps taken before starting the project. It could be not properly defining the scope, not giving value to timeframe, miss planning among developers, etc.
It comes as no surprise that every project manager undergoes such undesired situations where things get completely or partially changed. You must be wondering, what scope creep is? What causes it to happen? How can it be avoided? Well, the answers to all of your questions are as follows:
What is Scope Creep in App development Project?
Scope creep is an undesired condition or the additions that occur during the process. In simple words, it is a problem that is caused when an addition or requirement is asked by the stakeholder after the project has been started.
Scope creep is a common problem that most startups and enterprises face when building an app. A project rarely goes from initiation to completion without changes along the way.
There is no way a development team or any individual could predict what problems or changes are going to occur. So, you have to bring flexibility to your project in order to prevent scope creep. For an instance, let’s have a quick look at the factors which cause scope creep.
Causes of this problem
There could be several reasons causing scope creep in application development projects. But the following are some of the most common and repetitive blunders which developers make to cause scope creep.
- Poorly defined requirements.
- Lack of communication between developers, clients, or any stakeholders involved.
- Weak Leadership.
- Lack of control over the progress.
- Addition of unwanted features.
- Not including stakeholders earlier enough in the process.
How to Avoid Scope Creep in App Development Project?
No matter what, scope creep is always controllable. It depends on what ways you adopt to get rid of it. Here are some of the tips to avoid scope creep.
● Start with a Clear Vision
Firstly, you have to validate your idea. You have to have a clear vision of your app to do this. It would determine whether your app perfectly meets the customers’ requirements or not. You are just validating your idea rather than implementing it at this stage.
After that, you have decided to move further, you can contact the development company now. Remember, don’t approach the company until you have decided what problem you want to solve through your app. Because it could create a mess if you directly approach the development company without having a clear idea of what you want.
Similarly, the development company must clearly understand what the stakeholder wants. You need to make a clear vision that defines all the areas of the projects. These areas include limitations, flexibilities, timeframes, and features.
At this point, the stakeholder and developers must agree to the idea that is going to be implemented through the app.
● Define the Scope of your Project
After you have made the vision of your app, it’s time to move on to defining the scope of your project. It is one of the initial steps that define the list of all features, functions, and the design of the app.
Key stakeholder analysis, client & team discussions, and planning meetings can be the possible ways to define the scope of your project. It is very important to define your project as it is the base of what you’re going to build.
It is also important in the way that no one can turn around and ask for any changes which weren’t in the criteria before. If you don’t define the scope of your project earlier, you’re likely going to crack into scope creep.
Also, not defining the scope of your project could cause changes at any time of the development process. It could be at the very end or during the process which most of the time becomes difficult to add.
● Make Your Communication Effective
When you start building an app, it is necessary to set all the communication channels to stay updated with the client. These channels are created to effectively address every major as well as minor steps being taken. It will minimize the risk of unnecessary additions being made to the project.
Lack of communication can readily lead to misunderstanding of the project accomplishments. Therefore, adhere to staying connected. It will help increase productivity as any of the problems could be resolved through communicating with each other. Establishing communication would help ensure ideas generation and design implementation throughout the process.
Stakeholders suggesting changes in the very last moments could ruin all of your efforts if it is not fitting well. No matter how small or large your project size is, you should always prioritize establishing communication throughout the project.
● Present a Prototype
During app development, prototyping is a key to success. It is always a wise choice to present your idea through a prototype that requires less time and investment.
Prototyping means you will make an app with minimal functionality and it will be tested by the stakeholder, development team, or a limited audience.
It will give you a perfect demonstration of how successful your app is. And how it is going to be if you proceed further. It will benefit you in a way that you can add improvements earlier in the project if found any.
During the prototyping phase, you can explore newer ideas that you can implement after asking the client. It could be a waste or turning point for your app to hit the peaks in the market.
Prototyping enables you to make sure your product aligns with the customer’s needs. This simple task could help you save a lot of time and money. It would also help reduce the effort in building a wrong product and adding useless features throughout the process. After you have achieved the goals of prototyping, you are good to go with the project.
● Adapt to the changes
One of the ways to avoid scope creep is by knowing how you are going to deal with the changes effectively. You can say it is a techno-truth that during app development there will be some changes.
No matter if it is a minor or a major change, it is going to completely vanish the progress. YES, mind it. Mostly, it happens when a client doesn’t interfere with the start or doesn’t account for the progress along.
These scope changes could range from technological, laws changes to changes in features, demands from users or key stakeholders. In order to cope with this, bring flexibility to your project and be sure to have resources to make the changes when asked.
● Handle Design Changes
One of the most important parts while building an app is the design of your app. The design of your app decides its future. Now the question is, how the design of the app is going to cause scope creep in the project? Hold tight and pay attention to this part.
Mostly, developers focus more on the developing part rather than the designing part. They consider adding a different design but don’t value the additional cost and time required for it.
What happens is, the project turns out to be 3 to 4 times longer than it was before. So, it is necessary to give enough time and attention to the design of your app. I got a remedy for you to handle any of the design variations the clients ever ask to put in.
Every development company has teams formed that perform their respective tasks. There should be some individuals that would handle certain operations throughout the project.
Every team has a project manager in it, dealing with the major tasks and supervising the project. Assign him/her the role to stay connected with the client and update all the progress being made.
Whenever the client asks to make design changes, the project manager would consult with the development and designing team and ask if the change can be made in the given timeframe or not.
If it could be made within the given time frame, then it is well and good. But if not, then the project manager should ask the client for an extension in the timeframe.
This will bring smoothness and clarity throughout the development process and possibly avoid scope creep from happening.
Unfortunately, no app development project is immune to changes. You have to find ways to avoid scope creep getting into your project. I have compiled the most common and effective ways to avoid scope creep during the app development project. I hope you’ll find this guide helpful.