Mudassir Iqbal

Product Scope and Project Scope

Scope: The extent of what a project will produce (product scope) and the work needed to produce it (project scope).  It is the sum of the products, services, and results produced in a project. It is often documented using a scope statement and a Work Breakdown Structure (WBS), which are approved by the project sponsor.

These two terms are not only one of the most important terms in project management but also are mostly misunderstood or at least used interchangeably

To understand the difference better, we should first clarify the definitions of Product and Project.

Product as an artifact, a quantifiable, and can either be an end item in itself or a component item. It is product details. The Product Scope is defined and managed by Business Analyst or by Project Manager if he is playing a both role on the project

The project is a temporary endeavour undertaken to create a unique product, service, or result. The Project scope is under the management of Project Manager.

Project scope
Project Scope

Product Scope

According to PMBOK Guide sixth edition, a product is defined as an artifact, a measurable, or a component item. In simple words, a product is a substance or article developed during a natural, chemical and manufacturing process.

Product scope refers to the features or individualities of a product. Product scope is the actual tangible product while considering design, function, and component parts. It determines the upcoming marketing tactics, profit goals, and terrain saturation. In addition to focusing on actual tasks and responsibilities in delivering the service, product scope recommends the way how the services can be measured and enhanced for future clients.

Completion of the product scope is measured against the product requirements which are gathered in Requirement Traceability Matrix

Requirement: A condition or capability that is required to be present in a product, service or result to satisfy a contract or other formally imposed specification. This specifies what user wants to see in the final product. Its a link between project scope and the product scope

Project Scope

The scope of a project is an evident identification of the work needed to progressively complete and deliver a project. Among the important responsibilities of a project manager is to make sure that only the required task (the scope) will be executed and all deliverables should be completed in the given time frame and budget. The credentials of the scope of the project explain the limitations of the project, allocate responsibility of every member of the team, and set up processes of how work will be finished and verified. Project Scope is the work required to be achieved in order to deliver a product, service or an outcome with the specified characteristics and functions. It refers to the arrangement and implementation of goods and services such as supply chains, budget, personnel distributions, and assemblage lines.

The project scope is identified as part of Define Scope and Define WBS under the Project Scope Management and covers what is IN the project and should also consider what is NOT IN the project.

Completion of the project scope is measured against the project management plan


Product Scope VS Project Scope
Product Scope vs Project Scope


Project Scope can only be defined once the Product Scope is understood, as this contains the actions to deliver the Product.

Product scope is defined largely at the beginning of the project, either through charter or maybe by Project Bidding documents. Business case also identifies the Business problem in hand which will be solved with this initiative. Change in Product scope means a Change request and an effect definitely on the Baselines

Approved changes to the product scope will require a corresponding change to the project scope


Project scope is the work required to deliver the Product and is defined by the Project Management Plan. Product scope is the end result expected by the stakeholders and is defined and refined through the requirements

Product Scope vs Project Scope
Mobile Project vs. Mobile Product by Magenic

the key point is that product scope refers to the actual tangible product. In the case of a good, questions of product scope would address how it works, how it is physically made and how it can be improved in future iterations.

When it comes to Scope and Requirement, it should always be Project Scope and Requirement as Product Scope has no comparison with it. We cannot define the Scope until we define both Project scope and Product Scope.

Product Scope supersedes everything and this is defined at the beginning of the project. Requirements, based on the Product Scope you collect the project Requirement to understand the Product. This is largely Stakeholder Requirements.

Project Scope here comes the Box of Requirements and box can take up according to the capacity and therefore its a subset of Project Requirements defined or outlines or requested by the stakeholders


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