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The Plans Theme in PRINCE2

Written by Andy Trainer – Wed 20 Jun 2012

The Plans theme is fundamental to the PRINCE2® methodology - the other themes (business case, organisation, quality, risk, change and progress) all depend on effective planning before, during and even after each project. A good plan will facilitate communication and control throughout the whole project life cycle.

Effective and structured planning also ensures that everyone involved in the project has the same information to work from and refer to. Crucially, in PRINCE2, all plans are created on a product-based technique – the final objective is identified first and then the plan is made of how to deliver this product.

Our PRINCE2 courses cover all of the PRINCE2 themes in detail, with a focus on real-life application of this knowledge.

The Planning Horizon

PRINCE2 can be applied to all scales of project, but detailed planning can be difficult for lengthier projects. If this is the case, the project will be broken down into smaller stages, and each of these will have separate plans. The planning horizon is the agreed length of time for which it is appropriate – or possible – to plan in detail.

Contents of PRINCE2 Plans

The different types of plans in a PRINCE2 project will follow a similar structure, in order to be easily accessible to everyone involved in the project. The level of detail that goes into each level of plan is determined by the scale of the project.

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Managing a Stage Boundary (SB) PROCESS

Written by Andy Trainer – Thu 12 Jul 2007

 

PRINCE2® PROCESSES - Managing a Stage Boundary

The purpose of the Managing a Stage Boundary process is to enable the Project Board to be provided with sufficient information by the Project Manager so that it can review the success of the current stage, approve the next Stage Plan, review the updated Project Plan, and confirm continued business justification and acceptability of the risks. Therefore, the process should be executed at, or close to the end of, each management stage. The PRINCE2 Processes are covered in detail on our PRINCE2 Foundation training and PRINCE2 Practitioner trainingcourses.

The objective of the Managing a Stage Boundary process is to:

  • Assure the Project Board that all products in the Stage Plan for the current stage have been completed and approved
  • Prepare the Stage Plan for the next stage
  • Review and, if necessary, update the Project Initiation Documentation (in particular the Business Case, Project Plan, project approach, strategies, project management team structure and role descriptions)
  • Provide the information needed for the Project Board to assess the continuing viability of the project – including the aggregated risk exposure
  • Record any information or lessons that can help later stages of this project and/or other projects
  • Request authorization to start the next stage.

The main products of this process are as follows:

  • An End Stage Report produced by the Project Manager and given to the Project Board, outlining information on the current stage achievements.
  • Current Stage Plan actuals showing the performance against the original Stage Plan.
  • The Next Stage or Exception Plan for approval.
  • Project Initiation Documentation may require updating.
  • A revised Project Plan incorporating all the actual metrics.
  • An updated Risk register, together with the Updated Business Case and Project Plan, which is used by the Project Board to review that the Project has continuing ongoing viability.
  • Configuration item records created/updated for new stage products.
  • An updated Business Case.
  • The Lessons Log.
  • Any changes to the Project Management Team with updated Job Descriptions.

Team plans may also be produced when planning the next stage, defining the work packages that will be produced in the next stage.

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