The Seven Roles in PRINCE2 Projects

Over the last few weeks, I’ve produced a series of articles that explore the seven principles of PRINCE2. However, PRINCE2 is not a project management methodology that simply sets out principles and expects an organisation to ‘get on with it’. PRINCE2 also lays down a firm framework for who does what, and how it should be done. In my next few articles I’ll be explaining the seven key roles in PRINCE2 projects, before rounding off with the seven phases of PRINCE2 projects.

In this article, you’ll read an overview of the seven roles in PRINCE2 projects.

1.      The Customer or Executive

This is the person or organisation that has commissioned the project and will be paying for it. The customer will be the owner of the business case and has ultimate responsibility to ensure that the project delivers on its promise.

The customer will be the chair of the Project Board, which also includes the Senior User and the Senior Supplier.

2.      The Senior User

This is the representative of the organisation or people that will be using the product or service supplied by the PRINCE2 project: those directly impacted by it. It could be that the customer and user are the same person. The senior user is responsible for ensuring that the Project Board respects the needs of the user, and that these are specified within the project.

3.      The Senior Supplier

This is the organisation or person that supplies the expertise required for the PRINCE2 project to be successful. He or she will have the knowledge, experience, and expertise to inform the Project Board of what is involved in producing the finished deliverable, and ensuring that appropriate resources are provided for project completion.

4.      The Project Manager

The Project Manager organises and controls the project, choosing the team, and ensuring that the project is completed within time, budget, and to the required quality standards. The vital work of project planning is within the project manager’s remit.

5.      The Team Manager

There may be one or more team managers, depending on the size of the project. It’s not unusual for the project manager to assume the role of Team Manager on smaller projects. The team manager manages the day-to-day operational work of the PRINCE2 project, ensuring that the product is produced within the agreed tolerance of time, cost and quality.

6.      Change Authority

This is an individual or group who will consider any request for changes to project specifications. A change budget will be provided, and the Change Authority has the power to accept or deny change requests. Sometimes, the project manager will assume this responsibility.

7.      Project Assurance

Project Assurance provides an independent view of project progress at agreed intervals. This role must be independent of the Project Manager, and is often assumed by the Project Board. However, an independent Project Assurance team may also be appointed by the Project Board. It is this team’s responsibility to ensure that the project remains on track in the three areas of business assurance, user assurance, and supplier assurance.

In the next article in this series exploring the seven roles in PRINCE2, I’ll describe in more detail the role of the Project Board. Meanwhile, if you need advice or assistance with your project, please don’t hesitate to contact us: