What is a Project? – Introduction to PRINCE2® Method 1/4

These series of articles are aimed to provide a general overview of Project Management and PRINCE2. It will also provide you with some basic concepts regarding Project Management.

The following Introduction is divided into 4 main topics:
• What is a Project and Why use a Project Management Method?
• PRINCE2 Method and History
• Benefits of PRINCE2
• Structure of PRINCE2

What is a Project?

Standard definition for a Project can be given as: A project is a series of actions designed to accomplish an unique goal within a specified time.

To see this better, lest compare a Project to an Operation:

Operation: Is an ongoing action. Continuous and repetitive and delivers several results each time.
Project: Has the objective of achieving a unique goal meaning that it has not been done before. This project goal can either be a product or a service that brings about a beneficial change or added value to the business.

PRINCE2 definition of a Project

A management environment that is created for the purpose for delivering one or more business products according to a specified Business Case.

The PRINCE2 definition differs in one major detail from the stark definition of a project. It includes a Business Case which justifies the uniqueness and usefulness of the desired product.

Why use a Project Management Method?

A project requires a careful planning, good allocation of resources and actions, specifically designed to achieve the goal in question.

Common Project Failures

Projects usually fail for one of these three reasons

• The desired product definitions are insufficient
• Lack of Communication among the project team
• Time requirements and costs are poorly estimated

Project management then becomes the discipline of organizing and managing resources in order to complete the project within defined scope and required quality, time and cost constraints. It will guide the project through a controlled, well managed set of activities to achieve the desired results.

PRINCE2 provides a method that specifically addresses the potential problems of faulty management and keeps in view the principles of good project management to accomplish a successful project.

PRINCE2 makes sure that:

• All parties are clear about the outcome
• Project organization is properly defined
• Timeline and costs are carefully estimated

Related Articles

PRINCE2 Method and History | Benefits of PRINCE2 | PRINCE2 Structure


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