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PRINCE2 templates
Peter Rowlstone 07 Jun 2016 00:14
I would be interested to hear about other people's experience and use of the templates available from this site. Do people use them? Do they manipulate them or use them as delivered when you download them?
I'm interested in this because I'm about to do some work on the core project documents used in my job, and I'll be looking at these templates (and others) for ideas on what should be in core documents. 
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07 Jun 2016 00:16
The templates can be found here: https://www.axelos.com/best-practice-solutions/prince2/prince2-templates.aspx
 
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07 Jun 2016 01:17
The templates are a good start but need to be tailored to suit any organisational policies and standards. Also PRINCE2 does not adequately cover change management so you will need to develop an appropriate busines change management plan (and training plan) to cover readiness for service.  The template set also does not include a product based planning template so this is also helpful to have to support the management by stages principle and plan theme.

For gateway assurance purposes, its important to remember that the focus is on the project information, evidence and decisions rather than templates and meetings.
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07 Jun 2016 09:29
Thanks for that.

yes, I agree the information is the key point. But, it's always useful to have a standard way of catpturing that information. This ensures that the information wanted is at least signposted (put your costs here, etc), and it helps in decision-making if standard templates are used so that the relevant informatin can be found more easily (or noticed more quickly if it is missing).
As always, even standard templates customised to the organisation will be changed and adapted in everyday use. 
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07 Jun 2016 10:25
We always adapt the templates to the organization we work with. There may be more documents in addition to those documents, for example to procure work to projects. I usually like to start with simple templates, growing them as needed, instead of having comprehensive templates that are reduced when tailoring.
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07 Jun 2016 10:49
I like the sound of that approach - starting simple and adding complexity rather than removing it. I think that's appealing because if you have a section to complete there is a tendency just to do that rather than think about whether it is actually needed. That can make the process more difficult than it needs to be, and result in documents that contain information that isn't essential.
that's definitely an approach I shall include in my review of our templates. Thanks!
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08 Jun 2016 00:22
If your organisation uses a gateway assurance approach, its important to remember that each progressive assurance level requires a greater level of scruitiny of the information amongst other things. Remember the PRINCE2 Tailor to suit the project environment principle is not about the omission of information but how the information is adapted to external factors such as corporate policies and standards. For example, for a simple project the governance controls for configuration, communication, risk and quality management could be managed within the project initiation document rather than as separate documents.
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08 Jun 2016 10:35
We don't properly use the gateway approach, although we may be moving towards it.
But, the challenge of creating templates that meet the range of potential projects is going to be an interesting one to tackle. Enabling that flexibility will be important, alongside remembering that the people using them may not all be trained project managers. Simplicity will be key, but getting the right level of basic detail will be required - a difficult balance to achieve.
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08 Jun 2016 12:20
Another thing to be mindful of the standard offer PRINCE2 highlight report template is to make sure it provides the right information, to enable the right decisions to be made, by the right people on the project board. This is especially true, if the project is under the umbrella of a program or a portfolio. For a project, its important that enough information is being captured to enable all levels of reporting within an organisation.
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08 Jun 2016 12:26
Yes, that's right. The Highlight Report needs to be understandable to all who use it - whether that's the person filling it in or the person using it to get a snapshot of the project at that point.
I also think that the reporting chain should be in a matching format. So, a checkpoint report should be similar enough to a highlight report to enable transfer of information easily without the need to reinvent or reinterpret the information.
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