For tracking progress of the project PRINCE2® uses the “PROGRESS” theme. Progress tracking in PRINCE2® means monitoring and comparing actual achievements against those planned. Providing a forecast for the project objectives and the project’s continued viability and control any unacceptable deviations.
PRINCE2® defines Tolerances to track deviations. Tolerances are the permissible deviation above and below a plan’s target for time and cost without escalating the deviation to the next level of management. There may also be tolerance levels defined for quality, scope, benefit and risk.
Progress control involves measuring actual progress against the performance targets of time, cost, quality, scope, benefits and risk, and then using this information to make decisions such as whether to approve a stage or Work Package, whether to escalate deviations, and whether to prematurely close the project.
So to track progress steps are:
- Setup Project Controls for Delegations and Tolerance
Project manager uses below management products to establish baselines for progress control
Project Plan – includes the project level performance targets and tolerances.
Stage Plan – Includes basis of the day-to-day control of the stage.
Exception Plan – The Project Board may request an Exception Plan after having considered an Exception Report during the exception handling process. It includes the steps to overcome exceptional situations.
Work Packages – The Project Manager authorizes a Work Package. It includes the details of the piece of work required to be completed during a stage by an individual team member or a Team Manager.
Tolerances are set as below for each of the aspects of project
|Tolerance area||Project Level||Stage Level||Work package level||Product Level|
|Scope||Project plan||Stage Plan||Work Package||N/A|
|Time||Project plan||Stage Plan||Work Package||N/A|
|Cost||Project plan||Stage Plan||Work Package||N/A|
|Quality||Project Product Description||N/A||N/A||Product Description|
|Risk||Risk Management Approach||Stage Plan||Work Package||N/A|
- Dividing the project into management stages and authorizing the project one stage at a time.
Management stages are partitions of the project with management decision points. Project is divided into many management stages and the Project Board authorizes one management stage of the project at a time. In a PRINCE2® project minimum 2 management stages are required. Decision on number of stages is taken by Project manager in consultation with Project Board.
- Report and review progress through Time-driven reports
(Take place at predefined periodic intervals. For example, producing monthly Highlight Reports for the Project Board) and Event-driven reports (Take place when a specific event occurs. For example, the end of a stage)
- Raise exceptions whenever required.
There can be exceptions when tolerances at one or more levels exceed it’s agreed limit.
An exception is a situation where it can be forecast that there will be a deviation beyond the agreed tolerance levels
Exceptions can happen at three levels:
- Work-Package-level exceptions
- Stage-level exceptions
- Project-level exceptions
Depending on the exception level appropriate authority takes action or decision. Like in case of work package level exception Project Manager will advise of any corrective actions required.
In case of Stage-level exceptions Project manager refers the case to Project board for decision making.
Please remember that when project tolerances are forecasted to be exceeded, the Project Board no longer has the authority to manage the project and must refer the matter to corporate or programme management