Managing Scope Creep and Chasing Perpetual Minutia

The drill is this: Client requests and update. I make changes. I report back that the changes are complete. Client then looks at the site again and sees some other minute detail they want changed, doesn’t like what they originally requested and wants it changed back, or changes their mind about everything. Lather. Rinse. Repeat. Almost every web design client has a tendency towards this kind of thing, and his has led more than one web designer to drink…

The cure for this problem is getting a detailed written plan together for projects with a hard launch date, requiring that all content be turned over in final approved form before posting, and having a great project manager that can explain to the client why constant revision equals higher bills. For an Intranet site, there’s little monetary consequence for random changes, so most of the onus falls on the project manager to keep the client from getting everyone on the project wound up and spinning in little circles. Clients have a natural desire to see stuff up and running to get that instant gratification, but we all know that secretly they wish to navel-gaze, nit pick, and change everything at the last minute. Web designers need to resist this tendency at every turn by documenting the project requirements, sticking to the plan, and letting the client know that increases in project scope will definitely mean a higher price tag for the end product.