PRINCE2 is an acronym for Projects In Controlled Environments. It is a structured project management method that lets you across all the essentials of managing a project successfully. Initially it was intended for IT environments only, but it covers all types of projects and all other segments of industry quite generously. Originally, when released in 1996, it was a generic project management method but now it is a de-facto standard for project management in most UK government departments and private sector businesses. PRINCE2 basically emphasizes on dividing projects into more manageable and easily controllable stages. PRINCE2 certification can help you with a career growth

In 2013, the ownership rights of PRINCE2 were transferred from HM Cabinet Office to AXELOS Ltd (whose ownership is shared between Cabinet Office and Capita plc.).

PRINCE2 Certification - A Complete Guide

If you are a person who is interested in project management roles, then PRINCE2 certification can definitely help you with a career growth. This certification involves two steps: PRINCE2 Foundation and PRINCE2 Practitioner.  PRINCE2 training certification course can prepare you for both and also acquaint you with the de-facto standard that is now followed worldwide. During the course training, one acquires expertise in project management guidelines and the best practices as per PRINCE2 standards.

Overview of PRINCE2

PRINCE2 is a principles-driven project management methodology.  It comprises of seven principles, seven themes and seven processes.

THEMES: Themes are an important aspect of any project, which must be persistently addressed and linked if execution of a project has to be successful. The seven themes are:
  • Business case

  • Organization

  • Quality

  • Plans

  • Risk

  • Change

  • Progress
PRINCIPLES: Project management involves seven principles that are a universal set of good practices that can be applied to any project.  The seven principles are:
  • Continued Business Justification

  • Learning from Experience

  • Defined Roles and Responsibilities

  • Managing by Stages

  • Managing by Exception

  • Focus on Products

  • Tailoring to Suit the Project Environment
PROCESSES: The seven processes are the crucial steps required for managing, directing and delivering a project successfully. The seven processes comprise of:
  • Starting up a Project

  • Initiating a Project

  • Directing a Project

  • Controlling a Stage

  • Managing Product Delivery

  • Managing a Stage Boundary

  • Closing a Project
The above mentioned principles and themes apply in these seven processes.

Topmost reasons why you should get PRINCE2 Certification?
  • To gain a competitive edge among your peers- Getting a PRINCE2 certification is a validation of your abilities as a project management practitioner and your ability to apply PRINCE2 methodologies.

  • Recognition of your knowledge, skills and abilities- It is an unbiased endorsement of one’s project management skills on a global level.

  • An achievement- PRINCE2 certification demonstrates one’s abilities as a global project management leader.

  • Better job opportunities and greater earnings- With this certification, you shall be able to explore better job opportunities. Certification holders can also expect a higher salary increase.

  • Advancement in career- Getting a PRINCE2 certification reflects your readiness to take greater job responsibilities.

  • Improvement in knowledge and skills-Preparing for PRINCE2certification requires you to study and review current management processes and technologies employed. This is highlighted by the certificate that you earn.

  • Increased confidence- With knowledge, competence, skills and industry exposure, you naturally build a sense of self-confidence and become ready to define yourself beyond a job title.

STEP I - PRINCE2 Foundation Training 

The PRINCE2 Foundation training lays emphasis on theory. Acquainting with theory ensures that candidate feels confident while doing practical applications of PRINCE2 learning in the professional arena. The principles, themes and processes have to be understood in detail.
The Foundation Exam evaluates a candidate on his/her ability to act as an informed member of a project management team using PRINCE2. Clearing the exam validates the candidate’s understanding of PRINCE2 terminology, its principles, themes and processes.

On completion of the Foundation training, the professional can successfully do the following:
  • Elaborating upon the purpose and content of all roles in each of the seven themes, principles and processes.
  • Determining which of the management projects are an input to and/or output from the seven processes.
  • Determining the key contents & prime objectives of the management products.
  • Establishing the relationship between roles, processes, management dimensions & deliverables of a project.
Foundation course exam:
  • Format - multiple choice questions
  • Prerequisites - none
  • Total no. of questions - 75
  • Trial questions - 5
Passing marks – 35 (or 50%)
  • Exam duration: 1 hour
  • Type of Exam - Closed book

STEP II - PRINCE2 Practitioner Training

After the Foundation Training, PRINCE2 Practitioner training certification validates that the candidate has achieved an understanding of the application of PRINCE2 in real projects. With proper direction, the candidate shall be able to apply the learned methods to an existing project for its successful execution.

Some PRINCE2 learning objectives are required only at the Practitioner level. Whereas the Foundation exam assesses the candidate’s knowledge of PRINCE2 themes, principles, processes and roles, the Practitioner exam evaluates their aptness to apply the PRINCE2 methodology within a given scenario.

After clearing PRINCE Practitioner training and exam, you will have the ability for:
  • Generating thorough explanation of all themes, principles and processes with proven examples of all PRINCE2 products for application to address a particular project scenario.

  • Demonstrating an understanding of relationship between principles, themes and processes and PRINCE2 products along with an ability to apply this understanding.

  • Understanding the motive behind the principles, themes and processes and also comprehending the principles behind these elements.
Practitioner Exam:
  • Prerequisites - PRINCE2 Foundation, PMP®, CAPM®, IPMA-D, IPMA-C, IPMA-B, or IPMA-A

  • Format – Objective type, 8 questions X 10 items

  • Passing marks - 55%

  • Type of Exam - Open book (official PRINCE2 manual)
Important study tips:
  • Collect appropriate study material. The official website of AXELOS can be of help for that.

  • Try solving a sample paper or two to analyse your level and pin point your weak areas. It will also help you to get used to the exam format. Sample paper can be downloaded from the official website of AXELOS.

  • The methods or practices followed in your current organization may not help. So its better to stick to the methodologies of PRINCE2 while answering.

  • It shall help you hone your skills.

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