To improve the process of scoping a job or creating a Scope of Work (SOW) document, it’s important to know the reason why scoping is so important.
- It measures the effectiveness of your quotes.
- It serves as a tool to measure the productivity of staff. It’s like a check and balance system of accountability.
- It helps your firm become more systems-dependent and not people dependent.
In other words, it’s management from bottom-up (empowerment and system run itself) and not top-down management (control & command) where a dictator runs the show and business becomes people-dependent.
The quality and detail of your “scoping” is important so if the clients are asking for more, then you can refer them back to the “scope” and explain that the extra request will require a fee or at least prompt you to go back into “discovery” mode with them to assess their needs.
We have never had a problem explaining this to the client.
But it begins with the quality and detail of the original scope and then the management of the client’s expectations. This requires communication and interpersonal skills because often accountants prefer to “ask for forgiveness than to ask for permission “ especially around pricing.
Always best to ask for permission to charge them extra than to have a “fight” and seek forgiveness later.
Have the discussion upfront. If they don’t agree, at least you can spend the time with another client who will pay you.
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