Project Management guide
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What Is Project Management Framework?

A project management framework consists of the processes, tasks, and tools used to take a project from start to finish. It encompasses all the key components required for planning, managing, and governing projects.

The project management framework can be broken into three parts:

Project lifecycle: This is the cycle a project goes through from beginning to end. It consists of five phases:

  • Initiation
  • Planning
  • Execution
  • Monitoring & controlling
  • Closure

Project control cycle: The control cycle is the process of monitoring and controlling the project.

Tools and templates: Project plans, project management reports, and risk logs are common tools and templates used for managing projects.

6 project management frameworks

There are many project management frameworks you can choose to use.

Here are 6 of the most common ones:

  • PRINCE2: This framework is highly structured with a heavy emphasis on upfront planning.
  • CCPM (critical chain project management): Critical chain focuses primarily on resource allocation across the project.
  • Lean: A lean framework focuses on minimizing wasted effort and resources. Process improvement techniques are often incorporated into this framework.
  • XPM (extreme project management): XPM was designed for complex projects that occur in fast-changing environments. Emphasis is on stakeholder management as plans and schedules are rapidly changing.
  • Scrum: This framework was also designed for industries undergoing rapid change. Using this framework, projects are often broken down and planned in 2-4 week sprints.
  • Waterfall: This framework is one of the traditional approaches to project management. Waterfall requires a project to be planned beginning to end, with no phase of a project beginning until the previous one has ended.

How to choose a project management framework

One single framework does not work for all projects, which is why so many of them have been created over the years. When deciding which framework is best for your project, consider the following:

  • If your industry, technology, or product is fast-changing, an adaptable framework such as XPM or scrum is recommended.
  • If the project deliverable is not well defined and is intangible in nature (such as software), a sprint approach (such as scrum) may work best.
  • If the project is well-defined and stable, planning it out in its entirety decreases risks. Therefore, PRINCE2 or waterfall should work best.
  • Frameworks may be chosen based on what your organization and stakeholders are familiar with. If your company has never completed an XPM project before, introducing one may be difficult.
  • The priorities of your stakeholders will impact your framework. If waste is a critical concern, a lean framework may be chosen.
  • Frameworks are designed to be flexible and adapt to the needs of a project. It may be that you will end up borrowing pieces of separate frameworks as the circumstances of your project change.

Further Reading: