Product-based planning

Production-based plannning is a fundamental aspect of PRINCE2.

When using PRINCE2, it is of vital importance to identify all of the products, also known as deliverables, that make up or contribute to delivering the objectives of the project.

The required documents are also products, since they need to be produced within the frame of the project.

Product-based planning

Product Breakdown Structure (PBS)

In PRINCE2, the product-based planning starts by identifying a product breakdown structure.

The product breakdown structure is then refined, until all the necessary products have been identified. This creates a hierarchical family tree of products and sub-products, all relevant for creating the final end-product.

As mentioned above, the term product is used in a very wide sense in PRINCE2. For instance, the required documents that will be produced in PRINCE2 throughout the project are themselves products. Even the PBS itself is a product.

Other examples of things that are products in this sense, but that you might not normally think about as products:

  • Permissions
  • Approvals
  • Certifications
  • Quality checks

Product Flow Diagram (PFD)

The PBS must be created before we can start on the Product Flow Diagram (PFD). In the PFD, we define the order of precedence for the products. For more projects, this entails multiple and sometimes rather complex parallel paths in the flow chart.

If you are familiar with the Project Evaluation Review Technique (PERT) chart utilized for Critical Path Scheduling, you will recognize a lot here.

Work Breakdown Structure (WBS)

The PBS tells you what needs to be done, and the PFD show in what order. Armed with this information, you can proceed to create a Work Breakdown Structure (WBS). In the WBS, you provide more detail on each task that must be carried out.