"I've got the key,
I've got the secret".
It's consistency!

Thanks for taking the time to open and read my points of view, I’m extremely passionate about all the topics I blog about and even if you take one thing from this let me know. 

To follow on from part 1, where I covered my viewpoints on a consistent mindset when managing scope, I wanted to dive more into applying consistency daily. The details I share come from personal experience and methods I have used in my current and previous roles.

I’m a creature of habit, well, aren’t we all? Having a work routine is extremely important to me. Especially when it comes to the tactical management of scope through the lifecycle of buyers and partners I have supported. To echo on part 1, I believe it’s important to schedule that time to reflect on whether you are being forward-thinking, consultative, dynamic, agile, and mindful. If you want a readback on part one, click below and go into my blog section.

The challenge over the years, especially when we look at how quickly the extended workforce industry is becoming more complex with increasing service options available, has been finding a routine that is agile enough to mould and shift without applying many different mindsets/techniques.

When I look at my career, I find it easy to get consumed in the details and focus on making the buyer happy rather than taking a step back and ensuring that requests are not throwing me off track. I think most of us can have a harsh look at our career history and find times that this happened when it shouldn’t have. But that is how we learn and evolve, and expecting perfection is incorrect; for me, it’s more about what perfection looks like and reflecting on getting as close as you can to this.

So, what works for me when supporting buyers with capturing and maintaining scope throughout the lifecycle of extended workforce deployments?

My happy place comes from a mix of methods that I have learned throughout the years from literature and courses on leadership, consistency, and checklist management content. And, of course, I have 20 years of experience deploying methods through the projects I have supported.

I have found it most successful to keep it simple and develop a checklist approach. I see checklists as more of a “keeping the right focus” approach rather than a “list of set tasks, ” as these should sit within a project plan or requirement documents.

Why do I find checklist management the way to get solid consistency in approach?

Utilizing checklists is a vital tool to manage scope for several reasons:

Helps ensure you cover the critical fundamentals of gaining scope: Have checkpoints to gather information and ensure that the information being gathered is valuable. It’s as simple as asking why and how rather than just saying yes.

Keeps focus on the need and value: A checklist helps to ensure that resources do not focus more on the solution before understanding the need and, most importantly, the value to be gained.

Increase efficiency and productivity: A well-structured checklist can increase efficiency and productivity by providing clear direction and a concise list of elements that need to be approached.

Enable effective communication: A checklist can serve as a communication tool between team members and stakeholders, ensuring everyone is on the same page regarding scope.

Facilitate quality control: A checklist can help ensure that nothing important is missed, as we all know that not covering all bases can cause poor scope and, ultimately, scope creep when a project starts. Naturally, most projects experience creep, but it’s about minimising that and controlling it.

Overall, utilising structured checklists is a vital tool to manage scope as it helps to ensure you follow a path to success. However, a checklist approach is only practical with solid leadership and experience in managing scope. If not managed well, these checklists can be followed poorly.

What type of checklists do I find beneficial when gathering and deploying scope?

Honestly, there are several checklists I can use throughout the management of scope, but I consistently use the three checklists below.

Scope Definition Checklist: This checklist includes all the essential elements to be mindful of when defining the scope of an Extended Workforce. Some may think this sounds like a requirement-gathering exercise, but it’s more than that, as you are checking not only what you are asking but also how and why you are asking. This checklist complements a requirement-gathering exercise, as service providers have their way of gathering and documenting scope requirements. For example, I have items such as 1) Why does the buyer need this included? Or 2) How much of a change is this for the buyer? They can be expected to gather and accept a scope requirement rather than take the time to investigate its importance.

Stakeholder needs and expected value checklist: I like to keep this separate from a definition checklist as it’s more focused on targeting and working with highlighted stakeholders. A specific approach to managing stakeholder needs ensures you consistently ask them the right questions and check/validate throughout the scope capture.

Complexity of Scope Checklist: When defining scope, some needs are commonly not assessed correctly regarding complexity in implementing and managing. I have learned through experience that complexity is one of the biggest derailers in projects, resulting in a buyer being unhappy with the solutions implemented. Awareness of those complex needs will ensure they can be managed and highlighted at the right level throughout any deployment of solutions.

Outside of these, I have used more operational checklists, which depend on buyer or provider processes. For example, when a buyer or provider doesn’t have a checklist to manage scope Verification, I utilise scope validation correctly.

Overall, consistency is essential when implementing contingent workforce solutions because it helps ensure that your organisation is efficient and effective. Using checklists can add significant value and ensure all resources are aligned. You still have challenges during your deployment, but a consistent approach will minimise minimiser risks.


I hope you found this read useful, if you wish to dig in deeper into the checklists I use please get in touch. 

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