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What’s fresh in PRINCE2 & PMBOK Latest Edition?

Discover the transformative updates and strategic enhancements that PRINCE2 7th and PMBOK 7th Edition.



Understanding PRINCE2: Quick Overview


PRINCE2 (Projects in Controlled Environments) is a widely used project management methodology that is based on seven principles, seven practices, and seven processes. These are aspects of project management that must be continually addressed and connected to the processes.

7 Principles

7 Practices

7 Processes

Continued Business Justification

Business case

Starting up a Project

Learn from Experience

Organizing

Initiating a Project

Defined Roles & Responsibilities

Plans

Directing a Project

Manage by Stages

Quality

Controlling a Stage

Manage by Exception

Risk

Managing Product Delivery

Focus on Products

Issues

Managing a Stage Boundary

Tailor to Suit the Project Environment

Progress

Closing a Project

 

People, Sustainability and Digitalization in PRINCE2 7th


PRINCE2 7th edition aimed to adapt the methodology in response to rapid digital change, rise of Agile ways of working and increased uncertainty in today’s project environments. This edition reflects the agility in the practice of PRINCE2 for different types of projects with the reduction of rules to improve flexibility and as a fully tailorable method demonstrated with the addition of four project scenarios. The content and language have been simplified to enable greater accessibility for PRINCE2.


While keeping the essence of PRINCE2 through its structure of principles, practices, and processes that make up a project lifecycle, the 7th edition sees the addition of:


1.   People

The new third chapter to recognise that people, those working on the project and affected by it, are central to project success. The three focal people activities explored include leading successful changes, leading successful teams, and communication. All of which revolve around the understanding of people’s needs, capabilities and motivations. There is further explanation as to how people have been integrated into PRINCE2 principles, practices and processes.


2.   Sustainability as the seventh aspect of project performance

Encourages project teams to establish sustainability performance targets for their project work and recognise the impact of projects on their environment. The seven project performance targets to be managed through the PRINCE2 method are a basis for control.


3.   Digital and data management approach

This approach is applied to establishing project controls for progress management (Chapter 11). Explores document management systems and team collaboration systems as a useful tool for sharing and reporting knowledge. There is also use in the integration and accessibility of data for reports, registers and logs, as well was forecasting.


Understanding PMBOK: Quick Overview


Published by the Project Management Institute (PMI), the PMBOK Guide is a widely recognized standard for managing projects across industries. The seventh edition, released in 2021, shifts its focus from process-based to principle-based project management, aiming to be more adaptable and inclusive of various methodologies including agile, hybrid, and predictive project management approaches.


The transition to principles and performance domains in the PMBOK Guide Seventh Edition reflects a broader trend in project management towards more adaptive, flexible, and value-oriented practices. This approach acknowledges the diverse and dynamic nature of modern projects and aims to provide a more universally applicable framework that can be adapted to various methodologies, technologies, and business environments.


The Shift from Process to Principles in PMBOK 7


In PMBOK Seventh Edition focuses on delivering outcomes regardless of what approaches are used. Project practitioners are able to gain an understanding on project delivery.

The biggest change is the shift from a process-based standard to principle-based standard for project management. PMBOK7 primarily emphasises on principles and their results, moving away from the traditional focus on various processes, inputs, outputs, and tools/techniques in the previous PMBOK editions.


The 12 Project management principles in PMBOK7 are:

1.    Stewardship

2.   Team

3.   Stakeholders

4.   Value

5.   Systems thinking

6.   Leadership

7.   Tailoring

8.   Quality

9.   Complexity

10.  Risk

11.  Adaptability and Resiliency

12.  Change


Due to this edition’s focus on successfully delivering project outcomes, PMBOK 6’s Knowledge Areas has been replaced with PMBOK 7’s 8 Project Performance Domains. The project performance domains are grouped into related activities that are crucial for delivering project outcomes. The activities in each performance domain are guided by the principles of project management.


The PMBOK7’s 8 Performance Domains is graphically represented below

The performance domains operate in an unified system, where each performance domain is interdependent of the other performance domains to ensure the project it meeting its outcomes for successful project delivery. The performance domains run simultaneously with the project but the specific activities that need to be performed depend on the organisation, the project, deliverables, the project team, stakeholders, and other relevant factors.

The changes have been illustrated in the table below, offering a clear transition in the characteristics from PMBOK6 to PMBOK7.



Bridging Best Practices: Why Project Managers Need Both PMBOK and PRINCE2


It is of our opinion that project managers have a robust understanding of both PMBOK and PRINCE2 and use the depth of PMBOK to supplement knowledge for the direction and experience required of PRINCE2. PMBOK should be handled as an elaborate guide to project management procedures, processes, tools, approaches whereas PRINCE2 is unique for its business case-based decision-making.


PMBOK is descriptive with a focus on best practices as it is a standard for project management. It aims to provide a comprehensive guide to project management with an extensive dive into knowledge areas. PMBOK’s limited focus on technicalities to applying such methods is where PRINCE2 shines. As a prescriptive methodology, PRINCE2 emphasises on the how, when and who throughout the project lifecycle. With a greater range of project management team roles and responsibilities and emphasis on building a robust business case, PRINCE2 can be lifted for any project scenario.


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