Scope of Work Means Money in Your Pocket

The Scope of Work is where the money is. It is the aspect of a proposal that has the potential to break the bank. Many managers place the majority of their sales attention on the proposal. After all, the proposal lays out the scoped plan of action. What they don’t consider is that a poorly defined Scope of Work leads to scope creep. Scope creep occurs when a project runs over either because of ill-defined time requirements, misunderstandings of what was being provided by each party, or the project grows or changes without review or recourse. When a project runs over who do you think pays for it? Not the customer. That overage comes out of your bottom line. Scope creep leads to margin erosion along with a deterioration of the relationship you’ve cultivated.

Click to read how to avoid The Attack of the Scope Creep

And the real gold at the end of the tunnel is the fact that a well-written Scope of Work could easily set you apart from your competition. It should be branded and consistent, showcasing your expertise and demonstrating that you know how to get the job done in a timely fashion with no overages. This means you have to set clear expectations, reducing or eliminating confusion with a scope of work that details:

  • How your implementation team will work with the customer
  • The customer “rules of engagement”
  • Who’s responsible for what

Scope of Work Effectiveness

A scope of work not only benefits your customer and creates a long-lasting relationship, it also benefits sales and operations in numerous instances:


  • Sets and confirms expectations
  • Differentiates your company
  • Demonstrates professionalism
  • A happy customer generates repeat business and referrals
  • Potential up-selling with options


  • Accelerates hand-off from sales to operations
  • Prevents scope creep and margin erosion
  • Defines the project roadmap
  • Increases customer satisfaction
  • Reduces stress through greater certainty
  • Reduces buyer/seller disagreements

Scope of Work vs. a Statement of Work

A scope of work is one section of an all-encompassing Statement of Work (SOW). Many in the industry use the term “Scope of Work” and “Statement of Work” interchangeably. However, according to SmartSheet, a SOW is a document used in project and contract management covering the working agreement between two parties. The document states things such as objectives of the project, the scope of the project, the requirements and tasks, deliverables, timeline, etc. The SOW covers the WHAT of the project while the Scope covers the HOW. The Scope section will describe the project outcomes and the work to be done to achieve those outcomes.

Scope of Work Automation and its Benefits

Automating the creation of a SOW, including the Scope of Work, means you have a consistent document. Using the Microsoft suite, SalesDoc Architect can easily turn a quote from a manufacturer into any number of customer-facing sales documents – including a well-defined scope of work. By including rules and workflows in your automation you ensure that certain sections of both the SOW and Scope of Work are not forgotten.

Automating the generation of a scope of work – or any sales document – removes the clerical activities, saving lots of time. It will ensure consistency without the document sounding too boilerplate – like you’ve handed the same scope to every prospect in town. Scope of work automation – like what is found in SalesDoc Architect – will generate scope content based on findings from the discovery and the solution being proposed. No need to worry that language relating to another product is inserted in the scope leading to confusion. Automation leads to a faster turn-around so you can respond to your customers’ request in a more timely manner.


Automating the Scope of Work Output within the Sales Process


Scope of Work automation reduces errors. By using a software package like SalesDoc Architect (SDA) you can be assured that Microsoft Word variables such as name, address, etc. will automatically flow throughout the various sales documents. No more finding and replacing names only to miss one that stands out like a sore thumb.

The biggest problem with a non-automated scope of work is the lack of consistency. They can look different from one salesperson to the other and in the case of SPS, a ConvergeOne company, prior to using SDA, most of the proposals that went out the door were often incorrect. The scope of work did not match what was sold.


Read the story of how SPS, now a Converge One Company, eliminated scope creep using SalesDoc Architect


One of the biggest benefits of SOW automation is the ability to produce better scopes of work. SDA enables account executives to generate consistent scopes of work that precisely match what’s being sold. Because they are generated in Microsoft Word, they can be further modified to describe complicated and unusual implementations. SPS’s scopes of work now list out exactly what will be installed so that everyone is on the same page. This saves time and money and eliminates misunderstandings.

SalesDoc Architect also allows for integration with various CRM packages such as Salesforce and Tigerpaw. Using formulas and code, all that customer information – company name, address, contact information, etc. – automatically flows into all the sales documents. As long as it’s correct in CRM it will be correct in your proposal, scope of work and more. By integrating with CRM, you save time and don’t have to worry about fat-fingering typing a customer name. And once the sale is closed easily export the information back into CRM. No more creating “deals” in CRM that go nowhere and junk up your CRM and back office system with useless information.

Read “Eliminating Scope Creep with Tigerpaw and SDA”

Using APIs, automated proposal and scope of work generators can also hook into cloud-based storage such as AWS and to various Google applications such as Google Forms. This allows customers to complete their requirements online, streamlining the qualification and discovery process. This information is then fed back into the proposal and scope of work. It creates greater productivity from the sales team, faster response to the customer and provides a well-thought-out scope of work that is easy to understand and eliminates questions and mistakes.

Read “Raising the Bar on Technical Scopes of Work”

Scope Creep – What is it and do I really need to worry about it?

Scope Creep is not some stalker guy waiting outside the door to steal your money. Or is it? Scope Creep is exactly what it sounds like. It’s little changes that sneak up on you and can snowball causing projects to take longer to complete, or even fail in some cases, resulting in cost overages, shrinking margins and sometimes a lost customer. It is those items that going beyond the original scope of the job. Many times scope creep happens because a customer asks for one more little thing or you forgot to note that a service pack is not included in software being installed. It is a result of misunderstandings and not fully outlining what is and is not included in an implementation or who is responsible for each stage of implementation. As the saying goes, “The devil is in the details.”

There are certain Do’s and Don’ts of writing a Scope of Work. Download our free eBook, “How to Write a Scope of Work that Loses Money.”

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