Projects seldom go as planned. This is especially true for product development projects or projects that involve a lot of uncertainty. If something goes wrong, someone needs to make sure that everything goes back on track.
This is where Exception Reports and Plans play a role.
Exception Reports document any problems that have come up with the project. If needed, they suggest ways to fix the problem and how to keep the project moving forward. Exception Reports are usually prepared when something happens that was not allowed for in the original plan.
Exception Plans are documents that give more information about the option chosen in the Exception Report. The plan should explain what will be done to fix the problem and how it can be made sure that this doesn't happen again in the future.
The aim is to develop a set of actions or decisions so the project will still meet its objectives under changed circumstances.
The report is supposed to include proposals on how to improve the project, make it more efficient and increase its chances of success.
Reading the Exception Report will give you some insight on what happened, why it happened and how it can be avoided in the future. If you need to make a decision, the Exception Report will give you a good basis for that decision.
If something unexpected happens, it can put your project at risk. The project might even be cancelled because there is now a lower chance of success. You can avoid this by having a plan B, as well as making sure that the project is still affordable even after the unforeseen event has taken place.