What is PRINCE2?

PRINCE2 is project management framework which provides process-based tools to enable individuals and organisations to manage projects more efficiently. PRINCE2, which is an acronym of PRojects IN Controlled Environments (originally PROMPT II IN the CCTA Environment), also offers certification schemes which provide accreditation and endorsement for practitioners and trainers. PRINCE2 is currently the most widely practised project management methodology in the world. It is viewed by many as the basic foundational principles of project management.

PRINCE2 model. image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.


PRINCE2 methodology and framework


PRINCE2 comprises of seven flexible principles, processes and themes which can be structured for projects of any scale and type, as outlined below:


  • Seven PRINCE2 Principles


These seven guiding principles determine whether a particular project is managed using PRINCE2 training. If any of the principles below are not harnessed, it will not be considered a PRINCE2 project.


  • Continued business justification, which is a cost benefit analysis of the viability of any project
  • Learning from experience, which encourages participants to draw and find lessons from experience and earlier tasks and responsibilities
  • Defining responsibilities and roles, which requires the development of a coherent organisational structure and matching the right talents to specific responsibilities
  • Management by stages, which breaks down projects into stages for effective planning, control and monitoring
  • Management by exception, which allocates participants with the required level of authority within the project environment
  • Focusing on products, which creates focus on product characteristics, quality control and end user delivery
  • Tailoring to suit the environment, which compels the PRINCE2 framework to be developed based upon the size, importance, risk and complexity of a project


  • Seven PRINCE2 Themes


The themes provide specific treatments, justifications and guidance on tailoring bespoke PRINCE2 solutions for specific environments.


  • Business case, which establishes and maintains a record of business viability of a project
  • Organisation, which defines the roles and responsibilities of each project participant
  • Quality, which identifies and measures quality targets of a project
  • Plans, which outline the steps needed to develop bespoke PRINCE2 solution for a project
  • Risk, which identifies and manages risk and opportunities which could influence a project
  • Change, which details how a project manager will monitor and react on the changes caused by the methodology
  • Progress, which is an ongoing viability assessment of a project


  • Seven PRINCE2 Processes


The processes provide a detailed checklist of recommended actions during the lifecycle of a project.


  • Rolling out a project
  • Managing a project
  • Commencing a project
  • Managing individual stages
  • Supervising product delivery
  • Supervising individual stage boundaries
  • Ending a project lifecycle


Proper implementation of all seven processes, principles and themes will ensure an agile, reactive and effective PRINCE2 for every project.



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