Quantitative Approach to Project Scope Change Management

in Building Projects



By Echeme Ibeawuchi Ifeanyi, PhD

Department of Project Management Technology
Federal University of Technology, Owerri

Imo State, Nigeria




This study focused on Quantitative Approach to Project Scope Change Management in Building Projects. The objective is to determine how quantitative method can be applied in managing variations in building projects due to scope change. Survey method was adopted. Earned Value Analysis was partly used to evaluate ten building projects. Questionnaire were administered to 52 respondents. Descriptive statistics and Probability Impact Matrix (PIM) were used for analysis. The result show that the most significant scope changes occur in the execution stage of the project lifecycle. The study recommends the application of PIM in mitigating scope change problem in building projects.

Keywords: Building Projects, Scope change, Project Management and Quantitative Techniques, project Lifecycle.


Achieving the planned result is the primary test of effective performance in project management, and this is achieved through the realization of the project scope. The failure to manage and control this aspect of the project appear to be the principal reason why most projects fail. Harrington and McNellis, (2006) suggest that implementing the process described in particular project requirements provides an effective approach to building scope management into that project.

The Federal Capital Territory, Abuja has witnessed series of developmental activities over time, since it assumed the seat of power of Government of Nigeria. These developmental activities cut across roads, housing, bridges, schools and other infrastructure executed by both government and private sector which have contributed to the rapid development of the city. Other developmental activities have resulted in renovations of old buildings, conversion of old buildings to meet up with the trends in designs as well as remodeling of buildings for private and public uses. These activities however, have costs and schedule implications and other factors that may undermine their implementation. The owners of these projects have also developed strategies to meet up the demands. Sadly, projections on time and cost of executing these projects by contractors are often done inadequately (just to win the contract), thereby giving room for the projects to suffer both time and cost overruns. Unfortunately, most related literatures have not really emphasized prioritizing scope changes in accordance with their individual impacts on the respective building projects for effective management decisions. Project scope change is inevitable and one must be prepared to deal with it when it happens (Suchan, 2007). The current approaches to project scope change management only specify or identify the project scope changes, and without quantifying them, proceed straight to addressing them; as a result, management efforts are not directed towards determining the changes with the highest impact. Hence, this study seeks to provide an approach that not only identifies project scope change but also quantifies their impacts on the project, so that they can be prioritized and management efforts best directed in order to reduce the tendencies of building projects suffering time and cost overruns.

The aim of this study therefore, is to formulate quantitative approach in managing project scope change in building construction projects. To achieve this, the following objectives were set:

  1. to determine the stage of project where scope change can affect building project,
  2. to ascertain level of impacts that the identified scope changes have on building projects,
  3. to determine the most significant identified scope changes in building projects, and
  4. to determine the extent to which probability and impact matrix, a quantitative techniques, can be applied in mitigating identified scope change problems in building projects.

To achieve the study objectives, the following research questions form the basis for data collection;

  1. At what stage of project can scope change affect building project?
  2. What level of impacts can the identified scope changes have on the building projects?
  3. What could be the most significant identified scope changes in building projects?
  4. How can the Probability and Impact Matrix be applied in mitigating identified scope change problems?

To achieve the set objectives, this study focused on scope changes and its management in ten selected building projects carried out by PUZO Construction Limited, located in Abuja. The generated scope change management approach is generic since it can be easily adopted for use in any type of project.


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How to cite this paper: Ifeanyi, E. I. (2019). Quantitative Approach to Project Scope Change Management in Building Projects; PM World Journal, Vol. VIII, Issue IV (May). Available online at https://pmworldlibrary.net/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/PMWJ81-May2019-Ifeanyi-quantitative-approach-to-project-scope-change-management.pdf



About the Author

Ibeawuchi I. Echeme, PhD

Owerri, Nigeria



 Ibeawuchi Ifeanyi Echeme is a lecturer in the department of Project Management Technology, Federal University of Technology, Owerri. Echeme has a B.Tech, MSc, and PhD in Project Management Technology and has published more than fifteen (15) articles in both international and national reputable journals. Dr. Echeme has published a textbook on Project Time, Cost and Quality Management. He is a Certified Project Director (CPD) and a member of International Project Management Professionals (IPMP). Dr. Echeme has presented papers in conferences and workshops within and outside Nigeria. He can be contacted through; ibeawuchi.echeme@futo.edu.ng and ibeecheme@yahoo.com; Tel +2348032403835.