As the capabilities and requirements of organizations and businesses across the world continue to evolve, so too do the accepted norms for ‘best practices’. The ways in which teams and projects are managed are continuing to transform in line with changing technology, customer expectations and global connectivity, and yet the basics remain as critical as ever: teams must be able to complete projects on time, within budget and in a way which satisfies all stakeholders.
‘PRojects IN Controlled Environments 2’, better known as ‘PRINCE2’, is one of the world’s most popular and widely used project management frameworks. It offers a clear yet highly flexible approach to project management, one which has been tried and tested across a startling variety of industries in both the public and private sectors.
Still, while it makes sense to invest in a proven project management framework, PRINCE2 is hardly the only game in town. So what is it that sets PRINCE2 apart, and what are the most important benefits that you should be aware of?
Flexibility in project management
By far one of the biggest advantages of using PRINCE2 is its flexibility. As a generic methodology, PRINCE2 can be applied to any project regardless of its size, scale, location, industry or sector. Practitioners do not require specific software to run PRINCE2, and it is even flexible enough to be combined with other frameworks, with one of the most popular packages being PRINCE2 Agile.
Whatever your typical projects may entail, PRINCE2 can accommodate them. By learning as you apply and tailor the framework, you can also gradually create a more bespoke and subjectively suitable approach to project management for your organization.
At this point, PRINCE2 has been in use for several decades. It has become highly recognized and widespread, with a global community of practitioners all familiar with the framework’s common terminology and methods.
In essence, PRINCE2 standardizes project management processes. While it can be widely applied and adapted, the essential principles, themes, processes and project environments remain consistent enough that users can communicate even from different projects, departments, organizations and industries. A PRINCE2 practitioner can gain expertise in one team and apply it to another, and so on.
Many organizations choosing to utilize PRINCE2 will even upskill multiple employees at once in order to create project teams which are ready to go (to say nothing of saving on bulk course purchases!)
In PRINCE2 project environments, there are clearly defined roles, responsibilities and lines of communication. Every employee will know what is expected of them and their teammates, with all points of accountability and authority specified from the outset.
This level of clarity is absolutely essential for streamlined project management. It prevents any delays typically caused by confusion or needless finger-pointing. If there are any issues, team members know exactly who to go to, or who to hold accountable. PRINCE2-powered project environments even make it easier for practitioners to share knowledge across teams and departments.
With a transparent management structure, PRINCE2 projects can save a great deal of time and effort that is often wasted by human error. The result is projects which can be concluded more quickly and with fewer resources, without having to sacrifice quality.
Best practice framework
When skimming over the various corporate standards and frameworks floating out in the market, it can be easy to dismiss them as out of touch with the reality of running a business. After all, you don’t need a degree to become a millionaire, so why invest in corporate training if it isn’t necessary?
PRINCE2 is not mere theory, however. The methodology is based on the expertise and practical knowledge of practitioners from a wide variety of industries and sectors. It also has a proven track record of success, with no shortage of case studies to back up the effectiveness of PRINCE2 best practices.
It certainly makes sense to investigate the framework before investing in PRINCE2 training. However, if you are looking for a proven and practical approach to flexible project management, PRINCE2 has you covered.
An essential characteristic of PRINCE2 projects is that they must be viable from the get-go. Practitioners establish and assess the requirements, risk and rewards of individual projects, not just during the planning stages but consistently throughout. There must be a realistic and viable Business Case; one which the team will keep referring back to as the project progresses.
PRINCE2 offers a clear methodology for risk assessment, allowing teams to avoid costly setbacks and failures by predicting and preparing for them. At the same time, PRINCE2 also enables practitioners to adapt when faced with unexpected challenges. By applying and tailoring the framework in this way, teams can learn from their experiences and create a more bespoke approach for future projects.
Most importantly of all, the Business Case for a project will ensure that it keeps a consistent focus on the end product and its benefits. If risks or costs ever get to the point where they outweigh potential rewards, a project can be prematurely terminated and any remaining resources recovered.
Part of what makes PRINCE2 projects so streamlined is their emphasis on ‘Management by Exception’ as a best practice. In a PRINCE2 project environment, management is treated as a series of layers, with each section overseeing the one below. However, managers on individual layers are largely autonomous, only requesting help from above if they encounter an issue outside their usual capabilities (that is, to say, an ‘exception’).
By managing projects in this way, PRINCE2 practitioners can avoid the delays that come with having to delegate any and all decisions to upper management. With the power to work autonomously, managers can also enjoy the opportunity to develop their skills and gain experience as PRINCE2 practitioners.
PRINCE2 recognizes that, within a given project, there will be a variety of stakeholders who have an interest in its success. This can include customers, internal users, suppliers, shareholders and so on.
During project planning stages, as well as points where key decisions need to be made, PRINCE2 practitioners will ensure that the needs of all stakeholders are properly represented. Teams will know the exact expectations of each group, allowing them to ensure that the end product will meet all necessary requirements. PRINCE2 even enables users to account for changing requirements before a project’s completion.
For example, if you were planning to release a new service, what would customers expect as standard? What features should be provided to ensure a top-notch and market-leading product? By having solid stakeholder assessment practices in place, you can clearly define the required makeup of your end product, which will leave you far better prepared to work towards it.
Why pursue a PRINCE2 certification with Good e-Learning?
Good e-Learning is an award-winning online training provider. We cover the world’s most popular corporate standards and frameworks, including PRINCE2, Agile, Lean and ITIL 4. We have enjoyed immense success as a market disruptor, with over 3,000 active learners, 250 global clients and 90% repeat business.
We believe in making training courses easily accessible. Our PRINCE2 Foundation, PRINCE2 Practitioner and PRINCE2 Foundation & Practitioner courses are all fully mobile-accessible. Students can log in from computers, laptops, tablets and smartphones, allowing them to study anywhere at any time.
Thanks to our in-house team of experts, we can offer top-tier PRINCE2 training courses at excellent prices. Unlike the competition, we do more than simply deliver slideshows and text documents. With Good e-Learning, students can enjoy engaging training assets like interactive videos, motion graphics, audio narratives from tutors and gamified quizzes. We even provide 24/7 support so that students can call on our experts at any time.