PRINCE2 Project Initiation Documentation Template

PRINCE2: This is the full PRINCE2 Project Initiation Documentation Template.  Here you can also download this template in MS Word format and other relevant documents: Link (PRINCE2 2017 template)

Purpose The purpose of the PRINCE2 Project Initiation Documentation Template is to define the project, in order to form the basis for its management and an assessment of its overall success. The Project Initiation Documentation gives the direction and scope of the project and (along with the Stage Plan) forms the ‘contract’ between the Project Manager and the Project Board.
The three primary uses of the Project Initiation Documentation are to:

  • Ensure that the project has a sound basis before asking the Project Board to make any major commitment to the project.
  • Provide a single source of reference about the project so that people joining the ‘temporary organization’ can quickly and easily find out what the project is about, and how it is being managed.

The PRINCE2 Project Initiation Documentation Template is a living product in that it should always reflect the current status, plans and controls of the project. Its component products will need to be updated and re-baselined, as necessary, at the end of each stage, to reflect the current status of its constituent parts.
The version of the Project Initiation Documentation that was used to gain authorization for the project is preserved as the basis against which performance will later be assessed when closing the project.

Contents A PRINCE2 Project Initiation Documentation Template should cover the following topics. .

  • Project Definition
  • Project Approach
  • Business Case
  • Project Management Team Structure
  • Role Descriptions
  • Quality Management Strategy
  • Configuration Management Strategy
  • Risk Management Strategy
  • Communication Management Strategy
  • Project Plan
  • Project Controls
  • Tailoring of PRINCE2
Advice The PRINCE2 Project Initiation Documentation Template is derived from the Project Brief and discussions with user, business and supplier stakeholders for input on methods, standards and controls.
The Project Initiation Documentation could be a single document; an index for a collection of documents; a document with cross references to a number of other documents; a collection of information in a project management tool.The following quality criteria should be observed:

  • The Project Initiation Documentation correctly represents the project.
  • It shows a viable, achievable project that is in line with corporate strategy or overall programme needs.
  • The project management team structure is complete, with names and titles. All the roles have been considered and are backed up by agreed role descriptions. The relationships and lines of authority are clear. If necessary, the project management team structure says to whom the Project Board reports.
  • It clearly shows a control, reporting and direction regime that can be implemented, appropriate to the scale, risk and importance of the project to corporate or programme management.
  • The controls cover the needs of the Project Board, Project Manager and Team Managers and satisfy any delegated assurance requirements.
  • The project objectives, approach and strategies are consistent with the organization’s corporate social responsibility directive, and the project controls are adequate to ensure that the project remains compliant with such a directive.
  • Consideration has been given to the format of the Project Initiation Documentation. For small projects a single document is appropriate.
    For large projects it is more appropriate for the Project Initiation Documentation to be a collection of stand-alone documents. The volatility of each element of the Project Initiation Documentation should be used to assess whether it should be stand-alone, e.g. elements that are likely to change frequently are best separated out.
Project Definition (Explaining what the project needs to achieve. It should include information on the sections given below)
Project Objectives (covering time, cost, quality, scope, risk and benefit performance goals)
Desired Outcomes
Project Scopes and Exclusions
Constraints and Assumptions
The user(s) and any other known interested parties
Project Approach (To define the choice of solution that will be used in the project to deliver the business option selected from the Business Case, taking into consideration the operational environment into which the solution must fit)
Business Case (Describing the justification for the project based on estimated costs, risks and benefits)
Project Management Team Structure (A chart showing who will be involved with the project)
Role Descriptions (For the project management team and any other key resources)
Quality Management Strategy (Describing the quality techniques and standards to be applied, and the responsibilities for achieving the required quality levels)
Configuration Management Strategy (Describing how and by whom the project’s products will be controlled and protected)
Risk Management Strategy (Describing the specific risk management techniques and standards to be applied, and the responsibilities for achieving an effective risk management procedure)
Communication Management Strategy (To define the parties interested in the project and the means and frequency of communication between them and the project)
Project Plan (Describing how and when the project’s objectives are to be achieved, by showing the major products, activities and resources required on the project. It provides a baseline against which to monitor the project’s progress stage by stage)
Project Controls (Summarizing the project-level controls such as stage boundaries, agreed tolerances, monitoring and reporting)
Tailoring of PRINCE2 (A summary of how PRINCE2 will be tailored for the project.)


PRINCE2 Project Initiation Documentation Template: PRINCE2 2017 template