PRINCE (PRojects IN Controlled Environments) was first developed by the CCTA, now part of the OGC, in 1989 as a UK Government standard for IT project management. Initially developed only for the need of IT projects, the latest version, PRINCE2, is designed for all types of management projects.
- PRINCE2 Summary (Map 1 of 2) (PDF, 1 pages, 16 KB)
- PRINCE2 Summary (Map 2 of 2) (PDF, 1 pages, 14 KB)
PRINCE is a generic, tailorable, simple to follow project management method. It covers how to organise, manage and control your projects. It is aimed at enabling you to successfully deliver the right products, on time and within budget. As a Project manager you can apply the principles of PRINCE2 and the associated training to any type of project. It will help you to manage risk, control quality and change effectively, as well as make the most of challenging situations and opportunities that arise within a project.
- A PRINCE2 project has the following characteristics:
- A finite and defined life cycle
- Defined and measurable business products
- A corresponding set of activities to achieve the business products
- A defined amount of resources
- An organisation structure, with defined responsibilities, to manage the project.
PRINCE2 does not cover all aspects of project management. Certain aspects of project management (such as leadership and people management skills, detailed coverage of project management tools and techniques) are well covered by other existing and proven methods and are therefore excluded from PRINCE2.
What is PRINCE2
The PRINCE2 method is documented in the OGC publication “Managing Successful Projects with PRINCE2”, readily available from the official publisher, TSO. This core book is supported by a number of complementary publications which add guidance on how to tailor the method, how to manage your people in a PRINCE project, and outlining the benefits to your business of adopting a PRINCE2 approach.
PRINCE2 is a process approach to project management, fitting each process into a framework of essential components which need to be applied throughout the project. PRINCE2 helps you work out what roles should be involved in your projects, what they will be responsible for and when they are likely to be needed. The set of processes and controls provided give you the structure that will support the life of the project, and explains what information you should be gathering along the way. The PRINCE2 method demonstrates how your project can be divided into manageable chunks or stages, allowing you to plan ahead more realistically, and to call on your resources at the time they are most needed.
PRINCE2 acts as a common language between all of customers, users and suppliers, bringing these parties together on the Project Board. And although PRINCE2 doesn’t include contract management as such, it provides the necessary controls and boundaries needed for everybody to work together within the limits of any relevant contracts. In addition, the Project Board provides support to the project manager in making key decisions.
Most important of all, PRINCE2 allows your business to focus on doing the right projects, at the right time, for the right reasons, by making the start of a project and its continued existence dependent on a valid ongoing business case.