PRINCE2 Foundation Certification Notes 14: Initiating a Project Process

PRINCE2 Foundation Certification Notes 14: Initiating a Project Process

Important: The new PRINCE2® Foundation and Practitioner exams (PRINCE2® 2017) are available from 10 July 2017 (details of the changes here). Don’t worry, the changes are quite minor indeed as all the 7 principles, themes and processes remain the same. From now on until the end of 2017, candidates can take either the existing or updated English versions of the PRINCE2® exam. All PRINCE2® Foundation and Practitioner exams will be based on PRINCE2® 2017 from 1 January 2018. You can still seize the time to get certified based on the current version! Once you get PRINCE2® certified, your certification is still valid under PRINCE2® 2017 and onwards!

Introduction: In PRINCE2®, there are 7 Processes that provide guidance on every stage of the project from initiation to completion. The “Initiating a Project Process” has the sole purpose to understand the work needs to be done (including the products themselves as well as the project management strategies needed to create the products) in more details in order to successfully complete the project.

Initiating a Project (IP) Process

Purpose and Objectives of Initiating a Project Process

  • Purpose: to understand the project and planning in more details
    • reasons for the project
    • the benefits and risks
    • the scope of the project and the timeframe
    • quality requirements and how to achieve
    • monitoring and controlling of the project progress and communication strategies
    • how PRINCE2® project management methodology be tailored to suit the particular circumstances of the project
    • [this is somewhat very similar to the compilation of the Project Management Plan according to PMBOK® Guide for the PMP Exam]
  • Objectives:
    • to provide a solid foundation so that all stakeholders will be able to have a clear and common understanding of the planning of the project in terms of project, scope, cost, time, benefits, risks, issue, quality, decision making authorities, communication, and monitoring and control, etc.
    • to allow the Project Manager to create management products on the cost, quality, communication, risk, scope, etc. managment planning and strategies of the project

Input(s), Activities and Output(s) of Initiating a Project Process

  • Input(s):
    • Authorization to initiate the Project (from Starting Up a Project process)
    • Project Brief (from Starting Up a Project process)
    • Initiation Stage Plan (from Starting Up a Project process)
  • Activities:
    • Creation and assembling the Project Initiation Documentation (PID):
      • project management team structure and role descriptions
      • Business Case — by refining the outline Business Case
      • Quality Management Strategy
      • Configuration Management Strategy
      • Risk Management Strategy
      • Communication Management Strategy
      • Project Plan — including Product Descriptions, risks, timescales and costs
      • Project Controls description — how the Project Board will control the project
    • Request approval of the Project Initiation Documentation (PID) from Project Board
  • Output(s):
    • Request to deliver a project — i.e. to sign off the Project Initiation Documentation (PID)
    • Baselined Project Initiation Documentation (PID)
    • Benefits Review Plan — an overview of what and when project benefits will be realized (during and after the project)

Roles and Responsibilities for Initiating a Project Process

  • Project Board: approve the PID proposed by Project Manager
  • Executive: refine the Business Case
  • Senior User(s): provide information for Product Descriptions and Benefits Review Plan
  • Senior Supplier(s): provide resources for planning
  • Project Assurance: help Project Board to review PID
  • Project Manager: develop the various project management strategies & Benefits Review Plan and compile the PID
  • Team Manager: assist with planning


“Initiating a Project (IP) Process” is intended to lay a solid foundation for the whole project by formulating the project management strategies and understanding the work to deliver the project products that needs to be done in more details before committing more project spending. Approval from Project Board would be sought before actually working on the project products.

Wish you PRINCE2® Foundation Exam success!


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Edward Chung

Edward Chung aspires to become a full-stack web developer and project manager. In the quest to become a more competent professional, Edward studied for and passed the PMP Certification, ITIL v3 Foundation Certification, PMI-ACP Certification and Zend PHP Certification. Edward shares his certification experience and resources here in the hope of helping others who are pursuing these certification exams to achieve exam success.

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