PRINCE2 Process Model

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This article is also available in Italian.

This video provides a high-level overview of PRINCE2 using the Process Model. It is possibly the best introduction to PRINCE2, as you will be able to follow the path of a typical project and revise your knowledge of PRINCE2, for example, by drawing the Process Model diagram and explaining it in your own words.

The PRINCE2 Process Model diagram provides an overview of the seven PRINCE2 processes and helps you understanding of PRINCE2. You can download this PRINCE2 Process Model image in PDF format by clicking here or on the picture below.

prince2 process model

The PRINCE2 Process Model diagram helps to answer the following questions:

  • Shows the trigger for the project (the idea for the project) which is the project mandate
  • When and by whom the first management products that are created
  • How the seven PRINCE2 processes work with each other?
  • Which of the management products are created and updated in each process?
  • The number of times the management products are updated?
  • Who creates the management products (this is mostly the Project Manager)?
  • How the Project Board controls the project (using decisions, tolerances and reports)?
  • How the final product is accepted and the project is closed.

The PRINCE2 Process Model Diagram was created by Frank Turley and is based on the Process Model Diagram from PRINCE2. We suggest you also look at the the other two diagrams which support this Process Model Diagram:

An article on PRINCE2 Process Model Diagram is also available in Italian.

Process Model Colour

Due to the way that Process Model is normally represented, it is difficult to see that some processes are executed more than once during a project. This just makes learning PRINCE2 more difficult as you try to identify the relationship between the processes. Therefore the use of colours makes this relationship easier to understand:

Blue items

  • All blue items are executed (created) once in a project.
  • e.g.: Starting up the Project, Initiating a Project, creating the Project Initiation Documents, creating a Project Plan and Closing the Project.

Green items

  • All green items are executed once for each stage.
  • You can see from the diagram that Controlling a Stage and Managing Stage Boundaries work together. So if a project has four stages after start-up, then the items in green are executed four times.
  • There is just one exception that happens at the end of the final stage after all products have been delivered. The Closing a Project process follows the Controlling a Stage process, so Managing a Stage Boundary is not done at the very end of the final stage of a project.

Orange items

  • Orange items can be executed multiple times in a stage.
  • e.g.: A Highlight Report can be created and sent each week during a stage by the Project Manager to the Project Board. And the Project Board can give Guidance and Instructions to the Project Manager at any time.

Dark Red items

  • Dark Red items can be implemented multiple-times during a stage, as the Project Manager can give work packages to a number of Team Managers.
  • A Team Plan can be created for each Work Package and Team Manager can create a Checkpoint report

Four PRINCE2 Management Levels

In addition, the Process Model shows four Management Levels:

Level 1: Corporate or Programme Management The top level is the Corporate or “Programme Management” Level. You can see from the diagram that the only thing created in this level is the project mandate.

Level 2: Direction The Direction or “Directing” Level is where the Project Board works. They interface often with the Management Level and provide the above level with a number of notifications. There are three notifications shown in the process model diagram.

Level 3: Management The next level is “Management” and it is where the Project Manager works. It contains most of the activities and processes, such as Initiating a Project and Controlling a Stage. So you can see from this diagram that most of the management activities for a project are done by the Project Manager.

Level 4: Delivery The bottom level, “Delivery,” is where the project’s products are created. Remember. all the products created above the Delivery level are created just to manage the project. e.g.: Project Plan, Project Brief. These are also known as management products. All the products created in the Delivery level by the teams are the products users want from the project. These products are the reason why the project was started. These are known as specialist products.

Process Model – Processes

In addition there is a simpler variant of the Process Model diagram, from the point of view of the 7 processes


  • Directing a Project (DP): This process is for Senior Management and this course will show how the senior management controls the project.
  • Start Up a Project (SU): This is a very short pre-project process that gathers the necessary data to start the project.
  • Initiating a Project (IP): This process examines the justification of the project and creates the Project Initiation documents, which include the Project Plan.
  • Controlling a Stage (CS): This process describes the Project Manager’s day-to-day monitoring and control activities. This is where the Project Manager spends most of their time during a project.
  • Managing a Stage Boundary (SB): This process provides a controlled way to complete a stage and plan the next one.
  • Managing Product Delivery (MP): This process delivers the products. It is where the products (Specific Products) that the users will use get produced by the team members.
  • Closing a Project (CP): This process confirms delivery of the products and the Project Manager prepares the project for closure.

The PRINCE2 Product Map

The PRINCE2 Product Map is also available in Italian.



PRINCE2 Courses


Other PRINCE2 Links

PeopleCert runs the PRINCE2 Foundation exam and PRINCE2 Practitioner exam for the accredited training organisations (ATO) and these can be provided in the classroom or online.

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