Prince Project Framework

PRINCE2 is an acronym for Projects in Controlled Environments (second version) and is now the United Kingdom's de facto standard for IT project management. The Central Computing and Telecommunications Agency (CCTA) originally developed this structured project management methodology, which now forms part of the Office of Government Commerce (OCG) a government agency for the development and implementation of IT projects. In fact, this methodology is now so popular that many companies hire only PRINCE2-certified project managers. More and more companies are moving toward adopting this as their standard project approach. Companies such as British Rail, Nat West, Hitachi, BT, London Underground, and Royal Mail, among many others, benefit from using PRINCE2. Some of the many features of this methodology are:

A defined project management structure.

Flexible decision-making points.

A system of plans for resources and technical issues.

A set of control procedures.

A focus on products deliverables to the client.

A focus on project deliverables throughout the project.

This methodology can readily be applied to non-IT projects as well; therefore, even the construction industry can use this methodology. It is a project management methodology specifically designed to be generic and independent of any particular project type and complexity. This makes PRINCE2 methodology even more interesting to consider. It is nonproprietary, easy to use, and, with some basic training, an excellent approach. Similar to the Dynamic Systems Development Methodology (DSDM) described in Chapter 4, its use is dramatically on the increase in both the public and private sectors. A feature in PRINCE2 not seen in other methodologies is the concept of assuring progress from three separate but linked perspectives. Most organizations that adopt PRINCE2 choose it primarily for its wide applicability and use the pieces that actually "work for them."

Figure 3.5 shows that PRINCE2 is a process-orientated approach for project management. Each process has its inputs and outputs with associated project tasks and activities to be carried out. The methodology shows us that a project is decomposed in manageable phases, allowing efficient command and control. For example, look at project planning. This phase is mainly interested in focusing on results rather than planning when the activities will be done. PRINCE2 is largely driven by its business case (see templates), which describes the business justification, rationale, and motivation for the project. The same applies to all phases shown in the figure. Integrating this methodology into a company's existing culture and processes may require the insight and assessment by certified PRINCE2 project managers, who are knowledgeable of this methodology.

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Figure 3.5: PRINCE2 life cycle.

On the upper tier of the illustration, note that the project(s) may report to a corporate program management function. Start at "Directing a Project," which runs from the start-up of the project until the close. This process is aimed at the project board, who manages by exception, monitors via reports, and controls through a number of decision points.

PRINCE2 Phases

The key processes of the project board are these four main areas: 1.

Initiating (starting the project on the right foot).

Project Management Made Easy

Project Management Made Easy

What you need to know about… Project Management Made Easy! Project management consists of more than just a large building project and can encompass small projects as well. No matter what the size of your project, you need to have some sort of project management. How you manage your project has everything to do with its outcome.

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