A Capability is a specific competency that must exist in an organization in order for it to execute project management processes and deliver project management services and products. Capabilities are incremental steps, leading up to one or more Best Practices. Each Best Practice is made up of two or more Capabilities.
The existence of a Capability is demonstrated by the existence of one or more corresponding Outcomes. Outcomes are the tangible or intangible result of applying a Capability. In the OPM3 framework, a Capability may have multiple Outcomes.
An example of a Capability and its Outcome, in the case of the Best Practice cited earlier, would be as follows:
Best Practice: "Establish Internal Project Management Communities" Capability (one of four for this Best Practice): "Facilitate Project Management Activities"
Outcome: "Local Initiatives—The organization develops pockets of consensus around areas of special interest"
A Key Performance Indicator (KPI) is a criterion by which an organization can determine, quantitatively or qualitatively, whether the Outcome associated with a Capability exists or the degree to which it exists. A Key Performance Indicator can be a direct measurement or an expert assessment.
Example: the KPI for the Best Practice, Capability, and Outcome just shown is "Community addresses local issues." In other words, the existence of the Outcome "Local Initiatives" would be determined by whether or not communities within the organization are actually focused on addressing issues of local interest with regard to project management.
When a Key Performance Indicator is quantitative, involving direct measurement, a form of metric is required. A metric is a measurement of something. Something tangible, such as an error count, can be measured directly and objectively. Something intangible, such as customer satisfaction, must first be made tangible—for example, through a survey resulting in ratings on a scale—before it can be measured. A metric can be binary (something exists or does not exist), it can be more complex (such as a scaled rating), or it can be monetary (such as financial return).
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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.