Requirements Vs Scope

Requirements and scope are two terms commonly used in project management. Both are interrelated, so many professionals assume they are the same, but they are not. Requirements are about a product, while scope is about both the product and the project.

In today’s blog post, we will discuss these terms and clarify their differences, i.e., requirements vs scope, with examples.

What are the Requirements?

The PMBOK Guide defines the requirements as a condition or capability required to be present in a product, service, or result to satisfy a contract or other formally imposed specification.

Requirements are needs, desires, or expectations that project stakeholders want to see in the project’s deliverables. They are the things that the project must deliver to be successful. These requirements help stakeholders understand what the project output should include and are the basis of the project plan.

You will collect the requirements once the project charter is signed and stakeholders are identified. If you get the project through bidding, you can often get the requirement directly from the project sponsor.

Example of Requirements

Suppose you have a project to design and develop a website. The stakeholder’s requirements are as follows:

  • The homepage should be a landing page with a mission statement and mission but no product description.
  • The site should use a robust CMS without any page-building plugins. You can use basic blocks and programming for landing page design.
  • The About and Contact Us pages should be in the footer.
  • The website should be loaded within 2 seconds.
  • And more.

You manage project requirements through a requirements management plan.

What is Scope?

The scope is the work required to complete the project. It can be product scope and project scope, also known as the scope of work. Scope provides the tasks and activities that you must complete to develop a product that satisfies the requirements.

The PMBOK Guide defines scope as the sum of the products, services, and results to be provided as a project.

The scope is like project boundaries. It sets limits on what the project will and won’t do. It defines the size, time, and cost limits.

This scope is a part of the project statement of work.

Example of Scope

The scope of work for the website development project is as follows:

  • Website functional requirements
  • Design and layout
  • Navigation
  • Technology stack
  • Performance and Scalability
  • Security Requirements
  • Testing and Quality Assurance
  • Deliverables
  • Out-of-Scope
  • Timeline
  • Budget
  • Communication Plan
  • Change Control Process
  • Review and Approval Process
  • Risks and Mitigations
  • Acceptance Criteria

You manage project scope through a scope management plan.


Requirements are the desired outcome. The scope is the how-to-make-it-happen, and the plan is to turn requirements into reality. Together, they help ensure everyone is on the same page about what needs to be done and how to do it.

This topic is important for the PMP exam.

Fahad Usmani, PMP

I am Mohammad Fahad Usmani, B.E. PMP, PMI-RMP. I have been blogging on project management topics since 2011. To date, thousands of professionals have passed the PMP exam using my resources.