What We Liked: Content Consistency and Structure
We really like the fact that this 2005 version of PRINCE2 is an update of the 2002 version where changes have been made only to clarify some areas or resolve other areas that have shown difficulties. The remaining 85% of the text and chapter referencing is virtually identical. Consequently, users of the methodology can upgrade their PRINCE2 skills rather than have to learn a whole new procedure.
PRINCE2 recognizes four levels of management: Corporate Management that is not part of the project but typically sets the business context; the Project Board, representing the upper part of the project team; the project manager responsible for managing an authorized stage of the project; and the technical team management responsible for product delivery. In this way, the corporate business or program management interests are closely integrated with both project management at the project level as well as with the management of the project's technology at the team level.
An "Executive", more often called "Project Director" in North America, chairs the project board and is the person with the real responsibility for the project. This person represents the customer and is owner of the business case. He or she also ensures that the project or program maintains its business focus, has clear authority, and ensures that the project work, including risks, is actively managed.
The project manager, on the other hand, is "The person given the authority and responsibility to manage the project on a day-to-day basis to deliver the required products within the constraints agreed with the Project Board." These constraints are referred to as "Tolerances" and prescribe the ranges of acceptability of each of scope, quality, time and cost within which the project manager must manage. Any trend beyond these limits becomes an "Issue" and must be brought to the attention of the project board.
In terms of control, PRINCE2 establishes a good distinction between Tolerance, Contingency and Change Budget. "Tolerance is the permissible deviation from plan without bringing the deviation to the next higher authority." "Contingency, in PRINCE2 terms, is a budget including the time and money set aside to carry out the plan that will only be invoked if a linked risk actually occurs." A Change Budget is "The money allocated to the change authority to be spent on authorized Requests for Change." This is a valuable feature in projects where there is the likelihood of a significant number of small changes and "the Executive is asked to go back to corporate or programme management for an increase in the budget to cover the cost of such changes."
13. Ibid, p21
14. Ibid, p332
15. Ibid, p336
16. Ibid, p233
17. Ibid, p236
18. Ibid, 330
19. Ibid, p54