PRINCE2 has been designed to be generic so that it can be applied to any project regardless of project scale, type, organization, geography or culture. It achieves this by separating the management of project work from the specialist contributions, such as design or construction. These specialist aspects of any type of project are easily integrated and/or used alongside PRINCE2. It provides a secure overall framework for the project work focusing on describing WHAT needs to be done, rather than prescribing HOW everything is done.

For a project to be following PRINCE2, as a minimum it must be possible to demonstrate that the project:
• is applying principles of PRINCE2 (continued business justification, learn from experience, defined roles and responsibilities, manage by stages, manage by exception, focus on products, tailor to suit the project.
• is meeting the minimum requirements set out in the PRINCE2 themes (Business Case, Organization, Quality, Plan, Risk, Change and Progress)
• has project processes that satisfy the purpose and objectives of the PRINCE2 processes
• is either using PRINCE2’s recommended techniques e.g. Quality Review or using alternative, equivalent techniques

PRINCE2 is based on proven experience and governance for project management and must be tailored to the specific context of a project. The needs of the organization and scaled to the size and complexity of a project. It provides a common language (a ‘PM-dialect’) for all project participants to facilitate communication and promotes consistency of project work and the ability to reuse project assets. This also facilitates staff mobility and reduces the impact of personnel changes or handovers. Furthermore, it ensures that participants focus on the viability of the project in relation to its business case objectives, rather than simply seeing the completion of the project as an end in itself. PRINCE2 ensures that stakeholders (including sponsors and resource providers) are properly represented in decision-making and planning. And last but not least it promotes learning from project experience and continual improvement in organizations

PRINCE2 provides a process model for managing a project (see Figure). These processes consist of a set of activities that are required to direct, manage and deliver a project.

PRINCE2 process model

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