Pattern where scope increases or changes after implementation has begun.
It happens incrementally and thus invisibly.
Even in the most well-defined projects, out-of-scope tasks arise.
Watch for runaway situations where engineers are being asked to shoulder an unreasonable increase in scope.
HOW TO RECOGNIZE IT
Scope Creep is characterized by a sharp uptick in scrum burndown.
Generally, the problem a team is solving should be getting smaller over time as features are completed.
When you see this occurrence become a pattern sprint over sprint with the same team,
look to the external stakeholders that interface with that team to see what might be causing the issues.
WHAT TO DO
Scope creep is caused by poor planning and insufficient attention during design.
It’s not the engineer’s responsibility to shoulder the work resulting from bad specs.
Call it out!
Let the people who are responsible for pushing a poorly designed project into implementation know that it’s simply not ok.
Then show them how much additional work their carelessness caused.
Show them the data.
This more than anything will make the true consequences of scope creep visible and thus actionable.