PRINCE2 is a project management methodology for the organisation, management and control of
projects using a process based approach. It comprises eight high level processes. These are:
Directing a project
Starting up a project
Initiating a project
Controlling a stage
Managing product delivery
Managing stage boundaries
Closing a project
Each process is defined with its key inputs and outputs together with the specific
objectives to be achieved and activities to be carried out.
Directing a Project
Directing a Project runs from the start-up of the project until its closure. This process is
aimed at the Project Board. The Project Board manages by exception, monitors via reports and
controls through a number of decision points.
Planning is a repeatable process, and plays an important role in other processes, the main
Planning an Initiation Stage
Planning a Project
Planning a Stage
Updating a Project Plan
Accepting a Work Package
Producing an Exception Plan.
Starting up a Project
This is the first process in PRINCE2. It is a pre-project process, designed to ensure that
the pre-requisites for initiating the project are in place. The process expects the
existence of a Project Mandate which defines in high level terms the reason for the project
and what outcome is sought. The process of starting up a Project should be very short.
Initiating a Project
The objectives of Initiating a Project are to:
Define how the required product quality will be achieved
Plan and cost the project
Revise the Business Case and confirm it remains valid
Ensure the investment of time and effort by the project is justified, taking into account
the risks to the project
Enable and encourage the Project Board to take ownership of the project and commit to the
Provide the baseline for the decision-making processes required during the project's life
Managing Stage Boundaries
This process provides the Project Board with key decision points on whether to continue with
the project or not.
The objectives of the process are to:
Assure the Project Board that all deliverables planned in the current Stage Plan have been
completed as defined
Provide the information needed for the Project Board to assess the continuing viability of
Provide the Project Board with information needed to approve the current stage's completion
and authorise the start of the next stage, together with its delegated tolerance level
Record any measurements or lessons which can help later stages of this project and/or other
Controlling a Stage
This process describes the monitoring and control activities of the Project Manager involved
in ensuring that a stage stays on course and reacts to unexpected events. The process forms
the core of the Project Manager's effort on the project, being the process which handles
day-to-day management of the project.
Throughout a stage there will be a cycle consisting of:
Authorising work to be done
Gathering progress information about that work
Watching for changes
Reviewing the situation
Taking any necessary corrective action.
Managing Product Delivery
The objective of this process is to ensure that planned products are created and delivered
The Team Manager negotiating details of Work packages with the Project Manager
Making certain that work on products allocated to the team is effectively authorised and
Ensuring that work conforms to the requirements of interfaces identified in the Work Package
Ensuring that the work is done
Assessing work progress and forecasts regularly
Ensuring that completed products meet quality criteria
Obtaining approval for the completed products.
Closing a Project
The purpose of this process is to execute a controlled close to the project. The process
covers the Project Manager's work to wrap up the project either at its end or at a premature
close. Most of the work is to prepare input to the Project Board to obtain its confirmation
that the project may close.
The objectives of Closing a Project are to:
Check the extent to which the objectives or aims set out in the Project Initiation Document
(PID) have been met
Assess to what extent all expected products have been handed over and accepted by the
Confirm that maintenance, operation and training arrangements are in place (where appropriate)
Make any recommendations for follow-on actions
Capture lessons resulting from the project and complete the Lessons Learned Report
Prepare an End Project Report
Archive the project files
Produce a Post-Project Review Plan
Prepare a recommendation to the Project Board to notify the host organisation of the intention to disband the project organisation and resources.