Introduction to PRINCE2 Foundation and Practitioner Tutorial

1.1 Introduction to PRINCE2®

Hello and welcome to PRINCE2 Foundation Certification Course offered by Simplilearn. This lesson introduces us to PRINCE2 Methodology. Let us discuss the objectives of this lesson in the next screen.

1.2 Objectives

After completing this lesson, you will be able to: Explain the challenges faced by an organisation during project management Define a project Explain the need for project management methodology List the six variables of project Explain the structure and benefits of PRINCE2 Let us look at the challenges faced by the organisations in the next screen.

1.3 Organisational Challenges

In the current business scenario, the organisation needs to manage business operations and need to respond to the changes in the business simultaneously. If changes are not responded to in the business, it becomes difficult for the organisations to sustain in the market. Managing current business operations as well as business changes is a challenging task. They need to transform business operations to sustain in the changing business circumstances. To do that, they need to have a balance between Business As Usual (BAU) and business change by implementing a project. For example, a computer manufacturer provides support and maintenance of the existing products as a part of BAU, however at the same time tries to introduce faster and more efficient computers with new features in the market. This is to sustain or grow its market, which is an example of business change. A business change is introduced by implementing a project. In the next screen we will discuss the definition of a project.

1.4 Definition of Project

The official PRINCE2 manual defines a project as a temporary organisation that is created for the purpose of delivering one or more business products according to an agreed business case. Sometimes, projects are undertaken to introduce a change in the organisation or the projects are executed as part of a contract. Let us take the scenario of a project to introduce a change. For example, if the sale of a company product has declined in the last three months and a decision is taken to broadcast a new advertisement campaign to further promote the product in the market. Introducing a new advertisement campaign is a Project. According to PRINCE2, a project is taken as there is a problem. The expected change is introduced through projects. The characteristics of projects are, as follows: Project introduces change in an organisation. Each project has definite start date and an intended end date which makes all projects temporary in nature. Each project is unique. The resources from various units with multiple skillsets are involved in the project. This makes the all the projects cross-functional. Each project has its own share of risks. Hence, there is an uncertainty in each project In the next screen we will find out why we need project management methodology.

1.5 Need for Project Management Methodology

PRINCE2 defines project management as: Project management is the planning, delegating, monitoring and controlling of the entire project and the motivation of those involved, to achieve the project objectives within the expected performance targets for time, cost, quality, scope, benefits and risks. In spite of best efforts by the higher management and the project manager, projects still fail. Millions of Pounds are lost when the projects fail to achieve its objectives. The image on the screen represents the core concept of project management methodology. There are various reasons for failures, such as lack of support from senior management, unclear scope, and incorrect estimates. There is a need for following a systematic way of project management. If the projects are managed in a systematic way throughout the project lifecycle, the project has a higher possibility of success. The project management methodology helps project managers to keep control over the specialist work—such as building a website, or design a building—and to manage the risks effectively. The next screen will introduce us to PRINCE2.

1.6 Introduction to PRINCE2®

PRINCE2 is a non-proprietary project management method. This means a license fee need not be paid to any person or organisation for using the standards in the project. It is a generic methodology that can be applied to any project in any industry or domain, irrespective of project scale, type, organisation, geography or culture. Any product specific development methodology can be integrated with management aspect of PRINCE2. It is a widely accepted method for managing projects. Note that PRINCE2 does not provide specialist aspects such as industry specific activities, detailed techniques such as earned value analysis and leadership and motivational skills. In the next screen we will list the six aspects of PRINCE2.

1.7 Six Aspects of Project

As per PRINCE2®, the Project Managers need to control the following six aspects or variables of a project: First aspect is cost, as the project has to be affordable and, though initially there may be a particular budget, there will be many factors which can lead to overspending and, perhaps, some opportunities to cut costs. Second is timescales, as the next most-frequent question asked of a Project Manager, is the timescale of a project. Third Next is quality, as finishing on time and within budget is not enough if the result of the project is not functional. In PRINCE2® terms, the project’s products must be fit for purpose. Fourth is scope, because if the scope is not known, then the various parties involved in a project may end up talking at cross-purposes. Fifth is risks, as all projects entail risks but how much risk is acceptable should be pre-defined. The last aspect is benefits, as the Project Manager has to have a clear understanding of the purpose of the project as an investment and make sure that what the project delivers is consistent with achieving the desired return. Let us look at the structure of PRINCE2 in the next screen.

1.8 Structure of PRINCE2®

As seen in the image on the screen, the PRINCE2 is a project management methodology that includes four integrated elements of principles, themes, processes and the project environment. A project is called a PRINCE2 project ONLY if it follows the seven principles described by PRINCE2. The principles are the guiding obligations and good practices that determine whether the project is genuinely being managed using PRINCE2. The themes describe aspects of project management that must be addressed continually and in parallel throughout the project. The purpose of themes is achieved by performing PRINCE2 processes throughout the project. There are seven themes that describe how the seven principles can be followed while achieving the objectives of the themes. The seven processes of PRINCE2 describe how a project should be managed effectively from start to project closure. PRINCE2 provides guidelines for the activities recommended for each of the seven processes. It also provides the responsibilities for various roles in project organisation structure. In the next screen we will learn about the benefits of PRINCE2.

1.9 Benefits of PRINCE2®

PRINCE2 is an established and proven best practice for managing projects. It can be applied to any type of project and integrated with specialist product development method. It is widely recognised across industries. It provides common vocabulary among the suppliers and customers, and has well-defined project roles and responsibilities. It includes best practices for managing projects. It is independent of the industry, domain and technology. It can be integrated with specialist product development method. It has clearly defined project roles and responsibilities. It provides project organisation with structure of accountability, delegation, authority and communication. It also provides sufficient project controls so that the project can make efficient and best use of senior management time by supporting the principle of “Management by exception”. It also ensures that a project is viable, desirable and achievable. Let us move on to the quiz questions to check your understanding of the concepts covered in this lesson.

1.11 Summary

Here is a quick recap of what we have learnt in this lesson: Project is defined as a temporary organisation that is created for the purpose of delivering one or more business products according to an agreed business case. As per PRINCE2®, Cost, Timescales, Quality, Scope, Risks and Benefits are the six aspects of any project that need to be controlled The PRINCE2 is a project management methodology that includes four integrated elements of principles, themes, processes and the project environment.

1.12 Thank you

In the next lesson, we will discuss the seven principles of PRINCE2 methodology in detail.

  • Disclaimer
  • PMP, PMI, PMBOK, CAPM, PgMP, PfMP, ACP, PBA, RMP, SP, and OPM3 are registered marks of the Project Management Institute, Inc.

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