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PRINCE2 7th edition Agree the management approaches and establish the project controls 

 February 19, 2024

By  Dave Litten

PRINCE2 7th edition Agree the management approaches and establish the project controls

The new PRINCE2 7th Edition has considerably changed the processes, and the Initiating a Project process is no exception!

Prince2 7Th Edition Agree The Management Approaches And Establish The Project Controls Agree The Management Approaches

Agree the management approaches.

The activities to establish the approaches for the project may be executed in parallel. Still, it is recommended that the communication management approach is completed last, as it must include the communications required by the other approaches.

The management approaches are derived from business strategies, standards, or practices that the project needs to comply with, as well as the users’ quality and sustainability expectations captured in the project product description. 

When the approaches have been defined, it is possible to establish the project controls and create the project plan. 

The nine different management approaches are:

  • communication management approach 
  • sustainability management approach 
  • benefits management approach 
  • commercial management approach 
  • change management approach 
  • quality management approach 
  • risk management approach 
  • issue management approach 
  • digital and data management approach 

Recommended actions for the project manager:

Prince2 7Th Edition Agree The Management Approaches And Establish The Project Controls Agree The Management Approaches

Review how PRINCE2 will be tailored and its implications for the management approaches.

Review the project brief to understand whether any business strategies, standards, or practices relating to management approaches must be applied during the project (including any contractual requirements).

Seek lessons related to the management approaches from similar previous projects, business, and external organizations. (Some of these may already have been captured in the project log.)

Review the project log for any issues and risks related to the management approaches.

Update the project log if any new risks or issues are identified (or existing ones have changed).

Consult with project assurance to ensure the proposed management approaches meet the project board’s or business’s needs.

Seek the project board’s approval for the management approaches (although the project board may prefer to review them later as part of the project initiation documentation).

Establish project controls

The level of control required by the project board after initiation needs to be agreed upon, and the mechanism for such controls needs to be established, as does the level of control required by the project manager of the work to be undertaken by team managers. 

Project controls enable the project to be managed effectively and efficiently, consistent with the scale, risks, complexity, and importance of the project.

Effective project controls are a prerequisite for managing by exception. Project controls can include:

  • the frequency and format of communication between and within the project management layers 
  • the number of stages 
  • mechanisms to capture and analyze issues 
  • setting tolerances for delegated authority 
  • How delegated authority from one level of management to another will be monitored
  • mechanisms to escalate exceptions

Many of these controls would have been defined in the management approaches but have not been established. 

The focus of this activity is to establish such controls and to make sure that they make sense as a coherent set.

Recommended actions for the project manager and project support:

Confirm the delivery method (linear-sequential, iterative-incremental, hybrid) and assess its implications for project controls.

Review how PRINCE2 will be tailored and included in the project initiation documentation and its implications for project controls.

Review the management approaches to identify which controls need to be established.

Actively seek lessons related to project controls from similar previous projects, business, and external organizations: some may have been captured in the project log.

Review the project log for risks and issues associated with project controls. (The aggregated set of risks will impact the scale and rigour of control activities.)

Confirm and document the stage boundaries required to provide the appropriate level of control.

Allocate the various levels of decision-making required within the project to the most appropriate project management level.

Establish any decision-making procedures that may be appropriate by tailoring procedures within an existing quality management system or other standard procedures.

build the agreed decision-making authority and responsibility into the project management team structure and role descriptions where appropriate; this may include finalizing any roles not previously allocated, reallocating roles previously filled, and, if necessary, redesigning the

project management team to include all needed stakeholders and to build a coherent team

Confirm the tolerances for the project and the escalation procedures (from team managers to project manager, project manager to project board, and project board to business).

Describe the project controls in the project plan.

Consult with project assurance to check that the proposed project controls are consistent with the nature of the project and meet the needs of the project board or business.

Update the project log if any new risks or issues are identified (or existing ones have changed).

Seek the project board’s approval for the project controls (the board may review them later as part of the project initiation documentation).

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Dave Litten


Dave spent 25+ years as a senior project manager for UK and USA multinationals and has deep experience in project management. He now develops a wide range of Project Management Masterclasses, under the Projex Academy brand name. In addition, David runs project management training seminars across the world, and is a prolific writer on the many topics of project management.

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