PRINCE2 (an acronym for PRojects IN Controlled Environments) is a de facto process-based method for effective project management. Used extensively by the UK Government, PRINCE2 is also widely recognised and used in the private sector, both in the UK and internationally. The PRINCE2 method is in the public domain, and offers non-proprietorial best practice guidance on project management.
Key features of PRINCE2:
- Focus on business justification
- Defined organisation structure for the project management team
- Product-based planning approach
- Emphasis on dividing the project into manageable and controllable stages
- Flexibility that can be applied at a level appropriate to the project.
PRINCE was established in 1989 by CCTA (the Central Computer and Telecommunications Agency), since renamed the OGC (the Office of Government Commerce). In June 2010, the Office of Government Commerce Best Practice Management functions moved into the Cabinet Office.
PRINCE was originally based on PROMPT, a project management method created by Simpact Systems Ltd in 1975, and adopted by CCTA in 1979 as the standard to be used for all Government information system projects.
When PRINCE was launched in 1989, it effectively superseded PROMPT within Government projects. PRINCE remains in the public domain and copyright is retained by the Crown. PRINCE2 was published in 1996, having been contributed to by a consortium of some 150 European organisations.
Using PRINCE2 provides you with greater control of resources, and the ability to manage business and project risk more effectively. This will benefit:
- Individuals seeking leading project management skills and greater employment prospects
- Project managers
- Directors/executives (senior responsible owners) of projects, and
For individuals, PRINCE2 certification is an invaluable asset to your career as it increases employment prospects and helps you to do your job more effectively.
For organisations, PRINCE2’s formal recognition of responsibilities within a project, together with its focus on what a project is to deliver (the why, when and for whom) provides your organisation’s projects with:
- A common, consistent approach
- A controlled and organised start, middle and end
- Regular reviews of progress against plan
- Assurance that the project continues to have a business justification
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