Score Projects for Success, 1999 Engineering Conference Proceedings
Ford Bacon & Davis, LLC
It is common knowledge that a poorly defined scope of work is one of the major causes when projects fail to meet
estimated costs and schedule. Most owners and contractors are so anxious to make progress that they believe they
cannot take the time to define and plan the project early in its life cycle. Research and experience have proven this
to be a fatal mistake.
All projects consist of a scope of work, an estimate, a plan and a schedule for executing the project. A clear understanding of the scope of work by both the owner and the contractor is the basis for the estimate and the plan. Therefore, a well defined scope of work is the first step toward a successful project.
The Construction Industry Institute established a team to develop a method to determine what items must be addressed to ensure that a project is fully defined. They produced the Project Definition Rating Index (PDRI), an easy-to-use, weighted checklist of 70 scope definition elements. It allows the user to measure and manage the level
of scope definition as the project planning progresses. The objective is to make certain that the proper amount of time and effort are spent on the elements that contribute the most to a successful project estimate and execution plan.