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What is PRINCE2®?

PRINCE2 is a globally recognized and implemented project management method. PRINCE2’s best practices combine controlled project processes and regular progress monitoring with flexible decision-making points and a defined organizational structure. As a result, the method provides a process-oriented, product-related and scalable framework for effective project management.

PRINCE stands for “Projects in Controlled Environments”, as the standard was called when it was created in 1989 at the Central Computer and Telecommunications Agency (CCTA) in Great Britain. PRINCE2, on the other hand, is known as the generally applicable derivative of the originally IT-specific approach. Today, the rights to the trademark are held by AXELOS, a joint venture between the CAPITA Group and the Cabinet Office.

Due to continuous further development, the framework is highly applicable in all service organizations. As a result, PRINCE2 has been able to establish itself worldwide and has become one of the most widely used project management methods: Today, over one million people have a PRINCE2 certification.

Controllable, Precise, Practical: The Basic Elements of PRINCE2

PRINCE2 consists of four basic elements: Each of these elements has seven principles, themes and processes, as well as a description of how they can be adapted to different project environments. A PRINCE2 project is divided into controllable phases. In this way, the project’s progression can be precisely assessed at the end of each phase and directional intervention can be applied in a timely manner if necessary. This ensures that the project’s path leads to the desired results through controlled, well-organized and transparent activities. The process model also provides team members with concrete recommended actions at all times for the corresponding project phase.

The project managers and customers are also involved to a reasonable extent. According to the “Management by Exception” method, they are always informed about the project status without having to participate in time-consuming meetings.

Simply Royal: PRINCE2 and its Development

PRINCE2 offers particular advantages for IT projects because the method originates from the same creators as the globally recognized ITIL framework. But PRINCE2 can be used in a wide range of business areas, can be applied to all kinds of project types, and can even make the leap into the agile world if required.

PRINCE2 itself is considered both versatile and adaptable. The PRINCE2 Agile variant creates the ideal bridge to combine controllable and clear project design with the flexibility and speed of agile environments.

Ongoing further development guarantees that the method will remain up to date in our modern, changeable working world. As recently as 2017, PRINCE2 was comprehensively revised at the request of the professional public. The core elements, based on decades of project management experience, remained virtually unchanged in this update. A team of three authors, supported by three mentors, wrote the updated guidelines in close collaboration with certified PRINCE2 practitioners, the certified AXELOS community, and project management experts from a wide range of industry sectors and cultures. In addition, the guidelines were reviewed by over one hundred project management specialists – while Michael Weber, a SERVIEW expert, provided valuable feedback about the new PRINCE2 version.