4 ways to profit from the method
I was speaking to a client in a Canadian consulting organization recently. They can see that PRINCE2 is becoming more popular in Canada but needed to make a business case for PRINCE2 certification. So the question was: “where is the PRINCE2 added value to someone who is already familiar with the PMBOK?”
PRINCE2 added value comes in 4 main areas:
1 – Process and standardization
The PMBOK is a framework of knowledge, not a methodology. It’s what you should know, rather than what you should do. PMBOK 5 now specifically recommends PRINCE2 as a method to implement its framework (see PMBOK page 2) PRINCE2 is a methodology and its process model gives you an end to end road map to execute the project in detail. What we find in North America is that many organizations have had to develop their own methods to implement the PMBOK successfully. The home grown methods are usually OK but never as good as PRINCE2 is which is: ready made, 35 years old, has 1 million users and is free. PRINCE2 doesn’t replace your PMP. It fills in the gaps and gives you additional tools. PRINCE2 project managers stand out. PRINCE2 recognizes PMPs prior learning with an exam credit
2 – Higher salaries and rates
Evidence is emerging that PRINCE2 certified project managers are significantly better paid in Canada. The numbers change regularly, but they consistently show that PRINCE2 is good for your wealth. Organizations and individuals who have become PRINCE2 certified are building profitable niches.
3 – Business Justification or Value Driven Project Management.
PMBOK 5 still only mentions the business case twice. I think the PMBOK approach assumes the project is happening anyway and just concentrates on execution. PRINCE2 doesn’t assume this. It says that the project exists to deliver business value and this has to be confirmed at project start, middle and end. So in PRINCE2 the business case and anticipated benefits are the life support system of the project. Just like a life support system the PRINCE2 business case has to be continually valid, or it is game over. So PRINCE2 has mandatory checks on the business case in areas like Project Initiation, at Stage Ends and during Issue capture. PRINCE2 projects focus on value, not products
4 – Project Governance
PRINCE2 has a detailed governance model covering the 3 major project interests – Business, Supplier and User. These are built into the management of the project. It provides a lot of role descriptions so that anyone on a PRINCE2 management team can answer the question “what is expected of me” Crucially PRINCE2 assigns responsibility for the project to the Sponsor, not the project manager. This is realistic and wise: the sponsor has the authority to make decisions, align the project to corporate objectives and commit resources. It is right that they should take ultimate responsibility for success or failure. PRINCE2 includes all stakeholders in project governance but leaves the final decisions with the Business.