I came across a new project management term today called "Gold plating" in a CAPM Test question. Had never come across this term before so I looked up the definition.
Gold plating in software engineering or Project Management (or time management in general) refers to continuing to work on a project or task well past the point where the extra effort is worth the value it adds (if any). After having met the requirements, the developer works on further enhancing the product, thinking the customer would be delighted to see additional or more polished features, rather than what was asked for or expected. The customer might be disappointed in the results, and the extra effort by the developer might be futile.
Gold plating is also considered as a bad project management practice for different project management best practices and methodologies such as: Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBoK) and Prince 2. In this case, gold plating refers to the addition of any feature not considered in the original scope plan (PMBoK) or business case (Prince2) at any point of the project since it introduces a new source of risks to the original planning i.e. additional testing, documentation, costs, timelines, etc. However, gold plating does not prevent new features from being added to the project, they can be added at any time as long as they follow the official change procedure and the impact of the change in all the areas of the project is taken into consideration.
The CAPM test question is as below: