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PRINCE2® Roles and Responsibilities [Major & Minor Roles explained]

A project is run by a team and without one, it won’t even begin or complete. When a team is finally formed, they would then have to formulate a plan and act on the same to complete the project. Thus, it becomes an issue of great importance that the members in the team associated with a particular project are aware of what they have to do, what they can expect from others as well as their team members, to whom they have to report their work, and who shall do the brainstorming and decision-making, and this article focuses on providing answers for these questions. Hence, this principle defines the roles and responsibilities of everyone who is associated with the project, from the very beginning till the closure of the project.PRINCE2® clearly suggests that a project should have well-defined, distributed and agreed roles and responsibilities among the entire team undertaking the project. It is important for an organization to distinctly identify these roles and responsibilities to enable its structure that deals with Business, User and Stakeholder interests to function properly and effectively.PRINCE2® ORGANIZATION THEMEThe organization theme is responsible for defining and authorizing the accountability and responsibilities, that form the structure of a project.PRINCE2® assumes that there will be a customer responsible for specifying the desired result and then purchasing the project. Similarly, a supplier will also be present to provide the resources and skills needed to deliver the desired results. Thus, it is safe to say that  PRINCE2® is based on a customer/supplier environment.One major feature of PRINCE2® is that all the projects should have a defined organizational structure that will ultimately bring together the various parties and teams for the common aspirations of the project. It further enhances the effectivity of project governance and decision making.These are the components of a successful project management team under the organization theme:1. Representation of all the three major stakeholders as listed in PRINCE2®, a project consists of three major stakeholders which are the Business Sponsors, Users, and Suppliers.Business Sponsors are responsible for ensuring that the product or service offers value for money and is of high-quality standards.Users represent the consumer aspects, they will use the final finished products and services, and are the ones receiving the benefit of those products and services.Suppliers are responsible for providing the basic material and resources, raw or tailored and supplying proper knowledge and experience to the project. They are the producers, producing the finished products according to the designed project plan.This particular principle clearly states that the three major stakeholders must be correctly represented in the Project Management Team and in the Project Board as they act as the three staunch pillars that support and drive the project further ahead. Every successful project team must have a proper Business, User, and Supplier stakeholder representation.An effective project team should have defined responsibilities for directing, managing and delivering the project. These three processes paired up with accountability are the key components of a project and thus require accurate and proper distribution of responsibilities.Another component of a successful project team is the regular and continuous reviewing of various project roles assigned to the members throughout the project.The final component is to come up with an effective strategy for properly managing the communication flows that the project team must maintain to/from the external key stakeholders.It is a common understanding that the senior management board will be under a lot of workload and cannot supervise the day-to-day development of the project. Hence, the board issues certain responsibilities to certain individuals or a group of individuals, such that the direction and management of the project is separated from the delivery of the project’s outputs and results. It is done by using the principle of Management by Exception.The structure that eventually forms comprises of four levels, where Corporate level is outside the project borderlines:Corporate: It is responsible for:Commissioning the project in the first placeAppointing the Project Executive  Defining the project level tolerances to be followed by the project boardDirecting: It is undertaken by the project board, which is responsible for:Overall direction and supervision of the projectAccountable for the project’s successThey approve all the major plansThey approve completion of each stageThey authorize the start of the next stageCommunicating with the stakeholdersAuthorizing any deviation that exceeds the project level tolerancesManaging: Project Manager comes under this level and is responsible for:The day-to-day management of the project within the parameters set by the project boardTo make sure that the products are being delivered according to the time, cost, quality, scope of risk and benefit objectivesDelivering: Team Managers come under this level and are responsible for:Delivering the project’s products with the desired quality standards and within a specified time frame and costTo summarize these components, we can conclude that each project should have direction, management, control and communication within its structure and project team for providing better and fruitful outcomes.THE PREDEFINED ROLES IN A PROJECTThe PRINCE2® methodology is based on processes and division of stages for improved performance. It also brings along a series of defined roles with specific tasks designated to them. The predefined roles in a project based on a PRINCE2® environment are:Project Board - It is a group of professionals that includes :Executive: The executive has the custody of the business case and is the person ultimately taking responsibility for the project.Senior User: This position can be held by an individual or a group of professionals. Their primary objective is to represent the demands of the final user.Senior Supplier: This position can also be assigned to one or more individuals. Their responsibility is to ensure the representation of the interests of the suppliers.Project Assurance: The primary goal of Project Assurance is to make sure that the interests of the stakeholders are met.Change Authority: They are responsible for deciding the major change requests on behalf of the Project Board.Project Manager: The person responsible for undertaking the day-to-day supervision of the project on behalf of the Project Board.Project Support: It is the body responsible for assisting the Project Manager in the Project Management tasks and duties.Team Manager: This position can be assigned to one or more professionals that ensure the quality and other elements of production in the various teams that focus on a particular skill or knowledge from various departments.1. Roles Associated with the Project BoardThe project board represents the direction level of the project and consists of the following roles : a. The Executive: The executive actually owns the business case and his role is that of a business-oriented leader who is ultimately accountable for the project. The executive also has the authority of delivering the final words and decisions that are taken in the project. Thus, the project board doesn’t demonstrate any signs of democracy and equal decision-making rights.The executive is appointed by the corporate of programme management, he is the one responsible for the project with additional support from the Senior User and Senior Supplier. The executive is also responsible for designing and appointing the project management team, including the rest of the project board and also appoints the project manager b. The Senior User: It represents the final user’s requirements in the board. It specifies the needs of the user that will use the finished product or service and also establishes communication between the project management team and the users, and ensuring that the products will cater to the needs of the users, especially the quality of the product or service and ease of use. It also supplies benefits information for the Benefit Review Plan. c. The Senior Supplier: It represents the interests of the supplier. It represents the interests of those designing, developing, facilitating and implementing the project’s product and services, they provide supply to the project and make sure that only the right tools, people, equipment and expertise are in place. They also ensure that the product meets the expected criteria including the quality criteria.   Only one person can be the executive, but both the other two roles i.e the senior user and the senior supplier can be assigned to one or multiple individuals.Associated DutiesThe project board is responsible for holding accountability for the success and the failure of the project.Another duty is to provide unified direction to the project and the respective Project Manager.The project board also provides the resources and also authorizes funds utilized in the project.They should also provide additional visible and continuous support and assistance to the Project Manager.They ensure that there is effective communication within the project team and with external stakeholders.In real life, there are many organizations that have a project board that is incapable of handling projects or is either inexperienced or not at all interested in the project itself. This is a serious issue and a major drawback that could sabotage the entire project and the team associated. Henceforth, a great project board is a must to ensure that the direction is on point and effective. 2. The Project Assurance RoleIt is the responsibility of the Project Board to ensure that the project performs well and the products/services are produced, this is known as the Project Assurance. The board usually checks it directly through the Project Manager. But in large projects, many of the board members are busy with their respective tasks. Thus, the board can delegate this responsibility to someone else. The basic method is to double-check the information and this is called Project Assurance.It monitors the performance of the project and provides assistance to the Project Manager by giving insights on corporate-related issues. That’s how the board uses its Project Assurance responsibility to ensure that everything is going according to plan and the Project Manager is up to date with corporate regulations.Different board members have their respective Project Assurance responsibilities. For example:The Executive is responsible for Business Assurance (Business Value)The Senior User is responsible for the User AssuranceThe Senior Supplier is responsible for the Supplier’s Assurance 3. The Change Authority Role The responsibilities associated with the Change Authority are as follows:This role lies under the Project Team Management.The Project Board may decide if an individual should be appointed or an entire group is required to undertake this role.The primary objective of  Change Authority is to review the requests for change or the off-specifications related to the project.The Change Authority is also capable of delegating responsibility to a number of levels depending on the intensity and the complexity of the change.Asperity of Change RequestDecided ByLevel 1Project Support / Help DeskLevel 2Project ManagerLevel 3Change AuthorityLevel 4Project BoardLevel 5Corp / Programme ManagementIf smaller changes are expected in a project then the Project Board can handle them. But when many major changes are expected then it is more efficient to use a separate Change Authority group.A separate Change Authority group simplifies the change process and saves the Project Board from all the hassle. 4. The Project Manager RoleThe Project Manager role has the following impact on the project:Their primary objective is to manage the project on a daily basis. Their main focus is on the day-to-day progress of the project.This particular position of a Project Manager can never be shared and only one is appointed for a particular project.The Project Manager runs and supervises a project on behalf of the Project Board within a few specified constraints and collaborates throughout the project with the Project Board and the Project Assurance.In the case of PRINCE2®, it is usually preferred that the Project Manager belongs to the customer side.The Project is also responsible for running all the principal processes except Directing a Project Process (DP).The Project Manager is responsible for the Project Support and assistance and also the Team Managers.In several smaller projects, where there are no Team Managers, the Project Manager can manage the team members directly. Additionally, in cases where there is project support, the support task is completely on the shoulders of the Project Manager.5. The Team Manager RoleThe role of a Team Manager is actually optional and not necessary in smaller projects. The role  of a Team Manager only comes into the scene if:The Project is quite huge and requires a lot of members. Thus, a number of Team Members would be required to manage and supervise several teams from different departments and expertise.Team Managers are usually required for a specific skill, skillset or knowledge of the products to be produced. For example, a project requires an individual with great expertise of JAVA to provide assistance in handling and developing the applications or programs or researching on a particular product.They are also the need of the hour when the project is affected by geographical reasons. The project might include remote teams that provide assistance from remote locations, then that particular remote team is managed by a Team Manager.If the project is using an external company, then it would be easier to coordinate with the Team Manager rather than all the team members directly and individually.6. The Project Support RoleThe project support role offers the following services to the project:The Project Support provides administrative services to provide assistance to the Project Manager in the form of filing, distributing documents, adding documents to an IT System, etc.Project support also advises and offers guidance regarding the use of project management tools and configuration management.The Project Support also provides additional assistance in planning and risk management. For example, keeping the planned documents up to date and also highlighting what has been completed and what aspects of the projects are delayed.The prominent responsibility of the Project Support is Configuration Management and following the guidelines under the Configuration Management Strategy Document: it is one of the four strategy documents formulated at the beginning of the project.The responsibility of the Project Support is under the authority of the Project manager. To put forward in simple words, the Project Manager is responsible for the administrative duties associated with the project. Therefore, this role is not optional, however, the Project Manager can delegate this responsibility to another person or group.In a case, where the Project Manager is unable to delegate this role to someone else, it is the responsibility of the Project Manager to assume the role of the Project Support. This is the reason why we see many Project Managers working late in the evening and doing overtime. As they are trying to catch up on their administrative tasks and keep forgetting to plan all this in their normal working hours.STAGE-WISE MANAGEMENTA great way of handling a big and chunky task or project is to divide it into smaller and manageable fragments. This is the same methodology implemented in the PRINCE2® method of project management. But, instead of chunks or fragments, in PRINCE2® a different terminology is used, i.e. stages - Management Stages. The PRINCE2® methodology focuses on running and operating a project under a planned and controlled environment through a stage by stage basis.These stages are separated and decided by the Project Board on the basis of Decision Points. After the completion of each stage, the Project Board assesses the performance of the previous stage, analyzes the plans for the next stage, and ultimately decides whether to proceed to the next stage or not. The higher the number of stages, the more control is possessed by the Project Board, but it also increases their workload. Fewer stages in a project require less amount of work from the Project Board which indicates that the Senior Management will have less control over the project.  The division of a project into stages has some advantages as mentioned below:It allows the project to be divided into smaller and simpler fragments that can be easily managed.It leads to a high-level plan for the project and a very detailed Stage Plan.It also incorporates learning from the previous stages while devising a plan for the upcoming stages.There should be a minimum of two management stages in a project under a PRINCE2® project environment:The Initiation StageThe Management StageThe Closing a Project process is the last part of the second stage in a two-stage project.In this manner a particular PRINCE2® project is controlled, managed, and monitored on a stage by stage basis.
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PRINCE2® Roles and Responsibilities [Major & Minor Roles explained]

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PRINCE2® Roles and Responsibilities [Major & Minor Roles explained]

A project is run by a team and without one, it won’t even begin or complete. When a team is finally formed, they would then have to formulate a plan and act on the same to complete the project. Thus, it becomes an issue of great importance that the members in the team associated with a particular project are aware of what they have to do, what they can expect from others as well as their team members, to whom they have to report their work, and who shall do the brainstorming and decision-making, and this article focuses on providing answers for these questions. Hence, this principle defines the roles and responsibilities of everyone who is associated with the project, from the very beginning till the closure of the project.

PRINCE2® clearly suggests that a project should have well-defined, distributed and agreed roles and responsibilities among the entire team undertaking the project. It is important for an organization to distinctly identify these roles and responsibilities to enable its structure that deals with Business, User and Stakeholder interests to function properly and effectively.

PRINCE2® ORGANIZATION THEME

The organization theme is responsible for defining and authorizing the accountability and responsibilities, that form the structure of a project.

PRINCE2® assumes that there will be a customer responsible for specifying the desired result and then purchasing the project. Similarly, a supplier will also be present to provide the resources and skills needed to deliver the desired results. Thus, it is safe to say that  PRINCE2® is based on a customer/supplier environment.

One major feature of PRINCE2® is that all the projects should have a defined organizational structure that will ultimately bring together the various parties and teams for the common aspirations of the project. It further enhances the effectivity of project governance and decision making.

These are the components of a successful project management team under the organization theme:

1. Representation of all the three major stakeholders as listed in PRINCE2®, a project consists of three major stakeholders which are the Business Sponsors, Users, and Suppliers.

Three Major Stakeholders

  • Business Sponsors are responsible for ensuring that the product or service offers value for money and is of high-quality standards.
  • Users represent the consumer aspects, they will use the final finished products and services, and are the ones receiving the benefit of those products and services.
  • Suppliers are responsible for providing the basic material and resources, raw or tailored and supplying proper knowledge and experience to the project. They are the producers, producing the finished products according to the designed project plan.

This particular principle clearly states that the three major stakeholders must be correctly represented in the Project Management Team and in the Project Board as they act as the three staunch pillars that support and drive the project further ahead. Every successful project team must have a proper Business, User, and Supplier stakeholder representation.

  1. An effective project team should have defined responsibilities for directing, managing and delivering the project. These three processes paired up with accountability are the key components of a project and thus require accurate and proper distribution of responsibilities.
  1. Another component of a successful project team is the regular and continuous reviewing of various project roles assigned to the members throughout the project.
  1. The final component is to come up with an effective strategy for properly managing the communication flows that the project team must maintain to/from the external key stakeholders.

It is a common understanding that the senior management board will be under a lot of workload and cannot supervise the day-to-day development of the project. Hence, the board issues certain responsibilities to certain individuals or a group of individuals, such that the direction and management of the project is separated from the delivery of the project’s outputs and results. It is done by using the principle of Management by Exception.

The structure that eventually forms comprises of four levels, where Corporate level is outside the project borderlines:

  • Corporate: It is responsible for:
    • Commissioning the project in the first place
    • Appointing the Project Executive  
    • Defining the project level tolerances to be followed by the project board
  • Directing: It is undertaken by the project board, which is responsible for:
    • Overall direction and supervision of the project
    • Accountable for the project’s success
    • They approve all the major plans
    • They approve completion of each stage
    • They authorize the start of the next stage
    • Communicating with the stakeholders
    • Authorizing any deviation that exceeds the project level tolerances
  • Managing: Project Manager comes under this level and is responsible for:
    • The day-to-day management of the project within the parameters set by the project board
    • To make sure that the products are being delivered according to the time, cost, quality, scope of risk and benefit objectives
  • Delivering: Team Managers come under this level and are responsible for:
    • Delivering the project’s products with the desired quality standards and within a specified time frame and cost

To summarize these components, we can conclude that each project should have direction, management, control and communication within its structure and project team for providing better and fruitful outcomes.

THE PREDEFINED ROLES IN A PROJECT

PREDEFINED ROLES IN A PROJECT

The PRINCE2® methodology is based on processes and division of stages for improved performance. It also brings along a series of defined roles with specific tasks designated to them. The predefined roles in a project based on a PRINCE2® environment are:

  1. Project Board - It is a group of professionals that includes :
    • Executive: The executive has the custody of the business case and is the person ultimately taking responsibility for the project.
    • Senior User: This position can be held by an individual or a group of professionals. Their primary objective is to represent the demands of the final user.
    • Senior Supplier: This position can also be assigned to one or more individuals. Their responsibility is to ensure the representation of the interests of the suppliers.
  2. Project Assurance: The primary goal of Project Assurance is to make sure that the interests of the stakeholders are met.
  3. Change Authority: They are responsible for deciding the major change requests on behalf of the Project Board.
  4. Project Manager: The person responsible for undertaking the day-to-day supervision of the project on behalf of the Project Board.
  5. Project Support: It is the body responsible for assisting the Project Manager in the Project Management tasks and duties.
  6. Team ManagerThis position can be assigned to one or more professionals that ensure the quality and other elements of production in the various teams that focus on a particular skill or knowledge from various departments.

1. Roles Associated with the Project Board

The project board represents the direction level of the project and consists of the following roles :

 a. The Executive: The executive actually owns the business case and his role is that of a business-oriented leader who is ultimately accountable for the project. The executive also has the authority of delivering the final words and decisions that are taken in the project. Thus, the project board doesn’t demonstrate any signs of democracy and equal decision-making rights.

The executive is appointed by the corporate of programme management, he is the one responsible for the project with additional support from the Senior User and Senior Supplier. The executive is also responsible for designing and appointing the project management team, including the rest of the project board and also appoints the project manager

 b. The Senior User: It represents the final user’s requirements in the board. It specifies the needs of the user that will use the finished product or service and also establishes communication between the project management team and the users, and ensuring that the products will cater to the needs of the users, especially the quality of the product or service and ease of use. It also supplies benefits information for the Benefit Review Plan.

 c. The Senior Supplier: It represents the interests of the supplier. It represents the interests of those designing, developing, facilitating and implementing the project’s product and services, they provide supply to the project and make sure that only the right tools, people, equipment and expertise are in place. They also ensure that the product meets the expected criteria including the quality criteria.   

Only one person can be the executive, but both the other two roles i.e the senior user and the senior supplier can be assigned to one or multiple individuals.

Associated Duties

  • The project board is responsible for holding accountability for the success and the failure of the project.
  • Another duty is to provide unified direction to the project and the respective Project Manager.
  • The project board also provides the resources and also authorizes funds utilized in the project.
  • They should also provide additional visible and continuous support and assistance to the Project Manager.
  • They ensure that there is effective communication within the project team and with external stakeholders.

In real life, there are many organizations that have a project board that is incapable of handling projects or is either inexperienced or not at all interested in the project itself. This is a serious issue and a major drawback that could sabotage the entire project and the team associated. Henceforth, a great project board is a must to ensure that the direction is on point and effective.

 2. The Project Assurance Role

It is the responsibility of the Project Board to ensure that the project performs well and the products/services are produced, this is known as the Project Assurance. The board usually checks it directly through the Project Manager. But in large projects, many of the board members are busy with their respective tasks. Thus, the board can delegate this responsibility to someone else. The basic method is to double-check the information and this is called Project Assurance.

  • It monitors the performance of the project and provides assistance to the Project Manager by giving insights on corporate-related issues. That’s how the board uses its Project Assurance responsibility to ensure that everything is going according to plan and the Project Manager is up to date with corporate regulations.
  • Different board members have their respective Project Assurance responsibilities. For example:
  1. The Executive is responsible for Business Assurance (Business Value)
  2. The Senior User is responsible for the User Assurance
  3. The Senior Supplier is responsible for the Supplier’s Assurance

 3. The Change Authority Role 

The responsibilities associated with the Change Authority are as follows:

  • This role lies under the Project Team Management.
  • The Project Board may decide if an individual should be appointed or an entire group is required to undertake this role.
  • The primary objective of  Change Authority is to review the requests for change or the off-specifications related to the project.
  • The Change Authority is also capable of delegating responsibility to a number of levels depending on the intensity and the complexity of the change.
Asperity of Change Request
Decided By
Level 1
Project Support / Help Desk
Level 2
Project Manager
Level 3
Change Authority
Level 4
Project Board
Level 5
Corp / Programme Management
  • If smaller changes are expected in a project then the Project Board can handle them. But when many major changes are expected then it is more efficient to use a separate Change Authority group.
  • A separate Change Authority group simplifies the change process and saves the Project Board from all the hassle.

 4. The Project Manager Role

The Project Manager role has the following impact on the project:

  • Their primary objective is to manage the project on a daily basis. Their main focus is on the day-to-day progress of the project.
  • This particular position of a Project Manager can never be shared and only one is appointed for a particular project.
  • The Project Manager runs and supervises a project on behalf of the Project Board within a few specified constraints and collaborates throughout the project with the Project Board and the Project Assurance.
  • In the case of PRINCE2®, it is usually preferred that the Project Manager belongs to the customer side.
  • The Project is also responsible for running all the principal processes except Directing a Project Process (DP).
  • The Project Manager is responsible for the Project Support and assistance and also the Team Managers.
  • In several smaller projects, where there are no Team Managers, the Project Manager can manage the team members directly. Additionally, in cases where there is project support, the support task is completely on the shoulders of the Project Manager.

5. The Team Manager Role

The role of a Team Manager is actually optional and not necessary in smaller projects. The role  of a Team Manager only comes into the scene if:

  • The Project is quite huge and requires a lot of members. Thus, a number of Team Members would be required to manage and supervise several teams from different departments and expertise.
  • Team Managers are usually required for a specific skill, skillset or knowledge of the products to be produced. For example, a project requires an individual with great expertise of JAVA to provide assistance in handling and developing the applications or programs or researching on a particular product.
  • They are also the need of the hour when the project is affected by geographical reasons. The project might include remote teams that provide assistance from remote locations, then that particular remote team is managed by a Team Manager.
  • If the project is using an external company, then it would be easier to coordinate with the Team Manager rather than all the team members directly and individually.

6. The Project Support Role

The Project Support Role

The project support role offers the following services to the project:

  • The Project Support provides administrative services to provide assistance to the Project Manager in the form of filing, distributing documents, adding documents to an IT System, etc.
  • Project support also advises and offers guidance regarding the use of project management tools and configuration management.
  • The Project Support also provides additional assistance in planning and risk management. For example, keeping the planned documents up to date and also highlighting what has been completed and what aspects of the projects are delayed.
  • The prominent responsibility of the Project Support is Configuration Management and following the guidelines under the Configuration Management Strategy Document: it is one of the four strategy documents formulated at the beginning of the project.
  • The responsibility of the Project Support is under the authority of the Project manager. To put forward in simple words, the Project Manager is responsible for the administrative duties associated with the project. Therefore, this role is not optional, however, the Project Manager can delegate this responsibility to another person or group.
  • In a case, where the Project Manager is unable to delegate this role to someone else, it is the responsibility of the Project Manager to assume the role of the Project Support. This is the reason why we see many Project Managers working late in the evening and doing overtime. As they are trying to catch up on their administrative tasks and keep forgetting to plan all this in their normal working hours.

STAGE-WISE MANAGEMENT

A great way of handling a big and chunky task or project is to divide it into smaller and manageable fragments. This is the same methodology implemented in the PRINCE2® method of project management. But, instead of chunks or fragments, in PRINCE2® a different terminology is used, i.e. stages - Management Stages. The PRINCE2® methodology focuses on running and operating a project under a planned and controlled environment through a stage by stage basis.

These stages are separated and decided by the Project Board on the basis of Decision Points. After the completion of each stage, the Project Board assesses the performance of the previous stage, analyzes the plans for the next stage, and ultimately decides whether to proceed to the next stage or not. The higher the number of stages, the more control is possessed by the Project Board, but it also increases their workload. Fewer stages in a project require less amount of work from the Project Board which indicates that the Senior Management will have less control over the project.  

The division of a project into stages has some advantages as mentioned below:

  • It allows the project to be divided into smaller and simpler fragments that can be easily managed.
  • It leads to a high-level plan for the project and a very detailed Stage Plan.
  • It also incorporates learning from the previous stages while devising a plan for the upcoming stages.

There should be a minimum of two management stages in a project under a PRINCE2® project environment:

Stages in the project Environment

  • The Initiation Stage
  • The Management Stage

The Closing a Project process is the last part of the second stage in a two-stage project.

In this manner a particular PRINCE2® project is controlled, managed, and monitored on a stage by stage basis.

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Projects in Controlled Environments, PRINCE2® is a high-quality project management method that has carved a niche for itself by offering superior project management processes, no matter how big or small your project is. It adds streamlined, controlled project management principles and themes that help managers to manage and control projects easily and effectively.  You might still wonder whether PRINCE2® is the right tool for project management. What are the benefits of it? Why should you implement it on your current project management tools? To make things easier, we will discuss 7 principles of PRINCE2® method in details here. It is a process-based method that helps businesses to manage the project from start to finish. As we all know, before starting a project, it is important to plan it to avoid last-minute hurdles and hindrances. With the help of the PRINCE2® method, all the stages of the project are clearly described, roles and responsibilities are assigned to the teams and control and management of the project are easier to track. 7 principles of the PRINCE2® 1. Continued business justification: No matter which project you are working on, your project must have a clear justification including a clear requirement, a defined customer, feasible and scalable benefits and a complete cost assessment. This is the primary principle of the PRINCE2®. It helps you to stay focused on the project and you will be able to drive all your efforts to the common goal of the project- the desired goals and outcomes. 2. Learn from experience: Also, it is important that all the experiences are recorded for the future course of actions. Furthermore, it will help teams to learn from their mistakes and they will be able to finish projects with more dedication and expertise as they have learned lessons. All the stages and their outcomes are recorded in the PRINCE2® environment to make consistent and reliable learning.  3. Defined roles and responsibilities: When the team members have a clear understanding of their roles and responsibilities, it becomes easy for them to work with dedication and it also improves their productivity and performance too. With a PRINCE2® management method implementation, you would be able to define the roles and responsibilities of each team member to work more efficiently and effectively with unparalleled outcomes. 4. Manage by stages: Also, projects are completely broken in different sections and stages to manage them more effectively and accurately. Once the stage is over, it is reviewed by the superiors and learning will be recorded for the future course. This further helps management to ensure that the project is on its track and there are no loopholes involved in it. 5. Manage by exception: Board members are senior executives who have major roles and responsibilities in the organization and they cannot allocate time for the project on a daily basis. What they will be able to do is to define baseline requirements and assign them to the project manager. Some of the measurable elements of the project are time, cost, risk assessment, scopes, and others. If there are any issues such as project running late or is not on the track or goes out of budget, the project manager will take appropriate actions. However, there are some issues that might impact the establishment. Such issues are exceptions and here, board members intervene and make decisions. 6. Focus on the product: Also, teams are there to ensure that the deliverables are measured accurately and precisely and meet the project objectives. Superior quality control is the main thing that is always checked and compared with the requirements. 7. Tailor to suit the project: Different projects have different tailored requirements and with the PRINCE2® environment, tailored approach for each project is possible. The PRINCE2® method will be able to cater to your custom needs by adjusting different aspects of the method such as a number of team members, the amount of oversight and stage planning. Why PRINCE2®? What 2 stands for? There are chances that you might wonder what 2 stands for the PRINCE2® method. Well, the original PRINCE version was developed and introduced in the late 1980s specifically to manage IT projects. However, in 1996, the approach was reviewed and updated as per the latest issues and hindrances faced by the project management teams across the globe. A team of experienced project management specialists of more than 150 public and private organisations worked and updated the version and developed a new version that is more effective, efficient and accurate. The latest version is more improved and precise that addresses almost all the issues in a very defining manner. This latest version is called PRINCE2®. The number of roles in PRINCE2® PRINCE2® There are a total of three core roles: the project board, the project manager and the team. However, there are additional supplemental roles defined to make the project management more streamlined and linear.  We will discuss the total of 7 roles in PRINCE2® The customer The customer is the one who owns the project and is paying the organization for the project to be completed.  The user The user is one who will use the deliverables of the project or one who will be impacted by the outcome of the project. Sometimes, the user and the customer are the same people. The supplier A supplier is a person who possesses the expertise to complete the project and is responsible for delivering the best outcomes decided by the customer. He offers the knowledge and skills to complete the project. The project manager A project manager is a person who will monitor and control the complete project. The project manager is a very special person who is responsible for completing the project successfully. From planning, organising and controlling the work, everything will be done by the project manager. Also, the project manager will be responsible for forming the team and assigning roles and responsibilities to the team members and overseeing the work assigned to them. The project manager will also ensure that the project gets completed in the required timeframe and the outcomes are measurable and accurate as per the customer’s requirements. The project team and team managers The project teams are the ones who will perform the duties and tasks assigned to them effectively and efficiently. There might be one team or multiple teams to perform various tasks and actions. Teams might have a separate team leader who is responsible to ensure that the given tasks are completed in time. The administrator If the project size is small, the project manager will take responsibility of the administrator. However, in big and complex projects, the administrator is required. The administrator will be responsible for the setting up of meetings, tracking of the daily deliverables, updating everyone involved with the projects about important instructions and specifications about the project. A separate project support office is established to ensure that the project runs smoothly and completes in a given timeframe. The project board includes multiple people such as the customer, the end user and the supplier. There are three perspectives that are checked by the project board: The viability of the project is defined and checked by the customer to ensure that the project is important and should continue. The user ensures that all the needs are being met to complete the project on time. The supplier has a major responsibility. They will ensure that the project is running in the right direction and is offering a practical solution to the issue. The 7 phase process for the PRINCE2® project management method. Here, we will break the complete project management process in 7 parts to understand it more clearly.  1.Starting up a project Here, a customer submits a project requirement called the project mandate. It is a brief introduction to the needs and objectives of the project. The organization will access the project requirements and will make sure whether the company is able to complete the project or not. Once the project is approved, the customer will give a more detailed brief including actions, resources and other crucial information to complete the project.  2. Project direction Now the organization managers will check out the viability and justification of the project by reviewing and evaluating the project brief. They will assign a project manager and other necessities to complete the project. 3. Project initiation The project initiation document will be prepared by the project manager. The document will cover a comprehensive plan and six different factors including cost, quality, scope, time, risk and advantages.  The documents will be sent to the project board for approval and once the board approves the plan, the project will start.  4. Stage controlling The whole project will be broken into different stages and to complete these, teams will be formed and assigned responsibilities.  The project manager will map the process for each project stage and will take actions when any hindrances and loopholes arise.  5. Product delivery management The main responsibility of the project manager is to compare the deliverables and expectations from the project board. They will ensure that the deliverables meet the expectations.  Once the project is completed, the board will review it and ask for revisions and changes if needed.  6. Stage boundaries management The manager and the board will evaluate and review the deliverables at each project stage to ensure that the project is going in the right direction. 7. Project closing Once the project is completed, the project manager will close threads such as documentation, outcomes and reporting. The PRINCE2® is a very effective and superior project management method as it offers impeccable opportunities to the project board and the project manager to track the success of the project at each stage of the project.
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The 7 Principles of PRINCE2®

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Risk vs Issues [ Based on Various Factors ]

Can you guess a reason behind project failure? Here’s a hint. A poor risk or issue management can lead to project failure. According to PMBOK, risk can be defined as an uncertain event or condition that results in a positive or negative effect on a project’s objectives. Whereas, an issue can be defined as an event or condition that has already happened and has impacted or currently impacting the project objectives. There are certain grounds on which we can differentiate issues from risks. Let’s take a look at the differences. Difference between Risk & Issues Before moving to the core differences, let’s take a look at the comparisons between examples of risk and issues through the following chart: Risks Issues A critical resource might leave the project A team member resigns Team members of the project might take vacations during the critical time of the project. No one can be confirmed when team members would take vacations. There may be unanticipated requirement changes. New functionality has been found that needs to be added to the scope of the project. Something new might come up after impact analysis that may push the project dates. Two new changes which are the outcome of Impact analysis resulted in pushing the project deadline by a week. First of all, let’s look at the high-level difference between “Issues” & Risks”: Now let’s see how risks & issues play an integral role in a project: In general, if a project manager identifies all the possible negative risks and their respective response plans within the project, then the possibility of issues can be drastically reduced.  (i.e. prevention is better than cure). However, certain unforeseen situations may still arise which turn out to be issues. They could be certain potential risks which were unidentified in the past. They could also be risks which have been already identified, where the risk response plans are inadequate- and those events turn into issues and impact the project. If a project manager pays inadequate attention to risk management, there is a greater possibility of his spending his valuable time & efforts later in managing the issues that arise! Now, when it comes to issue management the project manager will document the issues in the “issue register” and will perform an issue analysis to identify the possible “work-arounds” to fix the issue. For example: Let us suppose there is a FIRE in the room. If we consider this in the context of issue & work-around, we say that there has been an occurrence of a fire, and we need to put it off by using a fire extinguisher. Since issues are present focused, there is a very limited time available to identify the work-arounds required to fix the issue. Once the work-arounds are identified, it’s also equally important that such issues should not get repeated in the future. There should also not be any possibility of re-occurrences in a different form, in order to bring it to a permanent closure.  In case of a re-occurrence then such events will be treated as “risks” because risks are future focused. They will be documented in the “risk register” and then sufficient risk response plans should be identified to cover those possible future risks. What are the types of risks in Project Management? Risks in projects are inclusive of both internal risks that are associated with the successful completion of each project as well as the risks that are beyond the project team’s control. The following are a few of the most common project risks: Cost risk: This refers to the escalation of project costs as a result of poor cost estimating accuracy and scope creep. Schedule risk: This refers to the risk of activities taking longer than expected. Drifting away from the schedule typically increase costs which leads to a delay of receiving project benefits and possible loss of competitive advantage. Performance risk: This refers to the risk of failure to produce consistent results with project specifications. There are some other risks which result in cost, schedule, or performance problems and create other types of adverse consequences for the organisation. They are as follows: Governance risk: This risk relates to the board and management performance with regard to ethics, community stewardship, and company reputation. Strategic risks: These risks are the result of the errors in strategy like choosing a technology that can’t be made to work. Operational risk: These risks comprise of risks from poor implementation and process problems like production, procurement, and distribution. Market risks: These risks comprise of risks related to foreign exchange, competition, interest rate, and commodity markets. This also includes liquidity and credit risks. Legal risks: These risks arise because of legal and regulatory obligations which include contract risks and litigation brought against the organisation. External hazards risks: These risks are incurred due to storms, floods, and earthquakes. Other than these, vandalism, sabotage, terrorism, labor strikes, and civil unrest are responsible for such type of risks. What is the importance of risk identification? The most important step in risk management is identifying risks. It involves generating a comprehensive list of threats and opportunities which are based on events that might prevent, enhance, accelerate, degrade, or delay the achievement of your objectives. You can’t manage risk without identifying it. But how to identify risks? One of the key steps in a proactive risk management process is to identify risks. You must look at the following sources in order to identify your project risk: Sources Description Risk registers and risk reports Provide a foundation for the evaluation of existing risks and their potential risk to an objective. Issues log It comprises of the issues and the actions considered to resolve them. Analyze the issues that were formally identified as risks. Audit reports These are the independent view of adherence to regulatory guidelines which include a review of compliance preparations, access controls, security policies, and risk management. Business Impact Analysis (BIA) It is a detailed risk analysis that is done in order to examine the nature and extent of disruptions and the likelihood of resulting consequences. Internal & external reviews These reviews are undertaken in order to evaluate the adequacy, suitability, and effectiveness of the department’s systems, and to plan for the scope of improvement. Perspectives for Risk Management It is important to realise the perspectives for risk management and evaluate them during a program’s life continuously in order to anticipate risks at an early stage and tackle issues appropriately. Few of the risk management perspectives are as follows: Strategic level: The interdependencies of the program with other initiatives, its outcomes, and benefits realisation are affected by the strategic level changes. These changes are driven by: External factors like political, economic, social, legislative, environmental, and technical Internal political pressure Inter-program dependencies Working with third-party suppliers along with other cross-organisational initiatives can be grouped under this level. Program level: The focus of a program is to deliver benefits to an organisation that positively or negatively affects both internal and external stakeholders. Risk Management for a program must be designed to work across organisational boundaries to ensure effective engagement of stakeholders and accommodation of different interests. The principal areas of risk and issues within a program are driven by: Aggregating project threats Lack of direction from the group of leaders Lack of clarity about expected benefits and buy-in from stakeholders Complexity of outcomes You should also consider the compilations associated with working across the organisational boundaries as another factor Availability of resource Lack of certainty about funding This also includes unrealistic timelines that increase program delivery risks. Project level: Project outputs help in delivering the outcomes and benefits within a program. Focusing on the risk and issue management on project perspective is important Areas leading to the rise of project risks and issues, resource constraints, scheduling issues, and scope creep It may lead to issues and risks if the project is unsure of what it is delivering. Operational level: The transition of a project to new ways of working and new systems can lead to further sources of risk as projects deliver the outputs. The following areas can be included in the operational level perspectives: The quality of the benefit-enabling outputs from projects within program Cultural and organisational issues Output transfer to operations and the ability to cope with new ways of working The risks can further be identified in stakeholder support Industrial relations Availability of resources to support changes. Early warning indicators for risks in project management The early warning indicators for project management can be defined as follows: In order to anticipate potential problems, there needs to be proactive risk management. These indicators offer advance warning about trends or events that can affect the outcomes of the program adversely. The sensitive risks can be tracked with the help of these indicators. Few of the early warning indicators are delays in delivery of expected or planned benefits, requests to change key program information, increase in aggregated risks, changes to organisational services, structure, and processes. Further, these indicators should be able to measure valid indicators, reviewed on a regular basis, and they should use accurate information. This ensures the effective functioning of the early warning indicators. The other methods which can be deployed to evaluate risks are as follows: Record the weighted average of the anticipated impact through the calculation of estimated monetary value. Calculate the accepted discount rate through the net present value calculation. Aggregate the risks together using a simulation technique through risk model. To conclude An experienced and certified project manager knows that every project involves identifying and managing project risks and project issues. Further, they are aware of the fact these risks and issues can be responsible for knocking a project off its track and divert the focus of the team away from fulfilling their responsibilities and goal achievements. This blog will help you to differentiate between project risk and project issues along with the key steps for identifying the risks. You will also understand the importance of risk identification and the perspectives of risk management. The blog also throws light on the early warning indicators to realise the risks in project management. This information will surely help you to realise the upcoming risk and avoid it for a smooth continuation of your project.
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Risk vs Issues [ Based on Various Factors ]

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PMI-ACP® Agile Certification Requirements and Processes

So. you want to get your PMI-ACP®  certification and are wondering what the PMI-ACP®  Certification course requirements and processes are! You are in the right place and this post will hopefully be beneficial in guiding you with regard to all the optional and mandatory steps required to apply for the certification. It’s obvious, whenever someone start a process (Certification Education) or anything new, the first question that comes to mind is, where should I start , and what are the requirements. The PMI-ACP® certification has been recently launched by PMI® . Here we have compiled a list of all the PMI-ACP® certification requirements and processes step by step in detail.   PMI-ACP® Certification Requirements and Processes There are basically seven steps required for PMI-ACP® certification; some are optional while others are mandatory. Step #1: User ID: This is optional. Go to PMI.org and create a User ID. This is not mandatory but there are benefits and I will mention a few of them: Free. You will be able to create a profile and your mode of payment, which makes later access easy. You will get up to date information from PMI®.   Step #2: Eligibility: This is the tricky part and most people get confused. (You can also go to PMI.org and perform the following steps to get updated information as PMI® may change their rules from time to time. Go to PMI.org —> select Certification —>select PMI-ACP. The eligibility is listed. Diploma: · High school. · One year of General Project Management experience with 2,000 hours of work with project teams. · Eight months of Agile Project Management experience with 1,500 hours of work with project teams using agile methodologies. · 21 hours of Agile Project Management Training.   If you think you are eligible, move to step 3. Step #3: Membership: This is optional and is different than your user id. PMI® has a membership service, which offers some benefits. There are several types of membership and the fee is different for each type. Please do check PMI® Membership and Types, PMI® Membership Fee and PMI® Membership Benefits. Also please visit PMI.org for updated information on membership, types, and benefits in details and check whether the membership suits your needs or not. We are mentioning a few benefits of membership here: Free access to PMI® library and a free copy of PMBOK Access to Local PMI® chapter, useful for getting PDUs and networking Waiver in PMI®-ACP fee and re-certification fee   Step #4: Application: Refer to Step #2, mentioning the education and project hours. Now you have to submit an application to PMI® showing proof of your education, the project hours and project management training that you have undergone. Previously, you had to do it online but now PMI® offers a downloadable pdf as well. You have to fill in the required details covering all processes and the hours you spend on each process. Step #5: Fee: When you submit your application, you will be contacted within a few working days and will be asked to deposit the fee for certification. Now as was mentioned previously, the fee is different for both members and non-members. Step #6: [one_half] A: Application accepted: You will be asked to proceed and schedule your exam at a Prometric center. B: Audit: PMI® randomly selects some applicants for an audit process.[/one_half] Step 6 has two parts as you can see; either your application will be accepted or put a hold for an audit. If you are one of the unlucky ones that are caught in the audit process then you have to show written confirmation from the bodies who authorize the education, experience and project management training. Step #7: Schedule exam: Once you are done with the above steps, the last step is to schedule your exam according to your convenience at prometric.com. However, before you schedule your exam, I would encourage you to read this article to familiarize yourself with the PMI®-ACP Exam Format.
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PMI-ACP® Agile Certification Requirements and Pro...

So. you want to get your PMI-ACP®  certification... Read More