Triple Constraint is a model of constraints of a project. These are areas where changes are typically introduced into a project. Balancing these constraints through the change control process is the key to a successful project. All three constraints should be treated at equal importance. These three are the most significant attributes of a project.
The Project Manager is the one who should juggle all these to keep balance.
Iron Triangle of Project Management Triangle
There are four components of Triple Constraints that is time, scope, Coat & “quality.” For ease in remembering Time, Cost & Scope (TCS).
Time is talking about the schedule, cost about budget, and scope about the quality of deliverables. Quality of scope is also a crucial part of the project.
As you know, the sum of the triangle angles is 180 degrees. It means if you increase an angle, the other two or at least one will decrease to keep the balance to make it 180 again. Similarly, if you increase the scope, then the cost should be increased, and so does the scope. Vice versa, if you cut the cost, you will get less scope, and it may also affect the time & quality – That sadly happens in most of the projects nowadays.
Let say you are building a house, and you want to decrease the cost; then, you need to cut the scope or increase the time to get it done in a longer run.
Similarly, if you want to complete it in a shorter time (Crashing), you need to increase the acceleration cost. In this way, you need to give overtime to get the labor in long shifts.
If you could fix the cost & time and keep scope (No Gold Plating or Creep), you will get a good deliverable.
BUT, if you try to play with any of the triangle’s sides, you may get a deliverable that is not up to the requirement & may face rejection from an end-user.
A better understanding of quality is that you will ultimately get a poor-quality deliverable if you get cheaper labor rates to reduce the cost.
As a Project manager, it is your duty to balance all the triple constraints components to avoid any hiccup in completing the project.
The Client or its representative prioritizes the priority of any Constraints (Cost, time, Scope). One must not play with any of the sides until it’s from the Client or higher authorities’ consent. This also helps avoid Scope Creep or any Gold Plating as if you go for; then, you may lose focus on any significant attribute.