At Westminster Business School we have been running PRINCE2 courses for some time. They have proved extremely popular and I have indeed completed both the Foundation and Practitioner courses myself.

As a PRINCE2 Practitioner I was interested to understand how PRINCE2 differed from Agile Project Management, bearing in mind this course has just been added to our portfolio and is available from February 2014.

I am a recent MBA graduate and now a PRINCE2 Practitioner, I have previously been involved in numerous projects. Becoming a PRINCE2 Practitioner has provided me with a much better understanding of a project lifecycle and how PRINCE2 benefits organisations, enabling managers to better control resources and manage business and project risk more effectively.

PRINCE2 is widely regarded as the gold standard of project management and is often a prerequisite for job descriptions and is recognised as being essential for keeping projects in control, particularly in the public sector.
Agile Project Management seems more suited to IT projects, which are widely regarded as difficult to manage and commonly exceed budgets or fail to achieve the expected objective. Is this because they’re being run using the wrong method?

Agile Project Management is iterative, in that development can be done, and re-done, based on new information or changes in requirements. This would suit itself to an IT environment, where something can be revised over and over again until the desired solution is achieved. However, this process would not suit the building of a skyscraper. Who is going to start building a skyscraper without knowing what the end result should look like, or in fact demolish a half-built skyscraper if the specification changes?

By using an Agile methodology projects are then broken down into bite size chunks, where decisions can be made throughout the project about the details required after each iteration. This creates the freedom to choose what is and is not required at various stages of a project, allowing a tighter rein on budgets and reduced project spend.

It seems to me that Agile as a system will work well for IT projects. Anyone wishing to keep such a project in control using PRINCE2 could end up with less control.

The Agile Project Management™ (AgilePM®) certification aims to address the needs of those working in a project-focused environment who want to be Agile. The course covers an approach to project management that sits alongside PRINCE2®. If you would like to find out more then read more here.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

University of Westminster
309 Regent Street, London W1B 2UW
General enquiries: +44 (0)20 7911 5000
Course enquiries: +44 (0)20 7915 5511

The University of Westminster is a charity and a company limited by guarantee.
Registration number: 977818 England