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PRINCE2 - Managing Stage Boundaries (SB) part 1

Fundamental principles

Projects, whether large or small, need to be focused on delivering business benefits, either in their own right or as part of a larger programme.
The continuing correct focus of the project should be confirmed at the end of each stage.
If necessary, the project can be redirected or stopped to avoid wasting time and money.


Before the end of each stage except the final one, the next stage is planned, together with a review and update of the Business Case, risk situation and overall Project Plan.

This process is normally triggered by Reviewing Stage Status (CS5), uses the Planning (PL) process to develop the next Stage Plan (or Exception Plan), and its output triggers the Project Board sub-process, Authorising a Stage or Exception Plan (DP3).

The steps of this process will also be used when creating an Exception Plan.

Process description

The objectives of this process are to:

  • Assure the Project Board that all products in the current Stage Plan have been completed as defined
  • Prepare the next Stage Plan
  • Provide the information needed for the Project Board to assess the continuing viability of the project
  • Obtain authorisation for the start of the next stage, together with its delegated tolerance margins
  • Record any information or lessons that can help later stages of this project and / or other projects

There could be changes of personnel and management, needing changes to the project management team.

There is also a requirements to review the Project Quality Plan and Project Approach to check whether they need changing or refining.

The stage that follows initiation is normally approved at the same time as the Project Initiation Document.
If so, this process would need customising for that situation.


This process has a simple purpose and can be done as informally as the Project Board and Project Manager wish.
The reporting and approval may be informal, if the Project Board is agreeable.
However, it is advisable to document the major decisions, even if it is only in the Project Manager’s Daily Log.

  • Gather the results of the current stage
  • Plan the next stage
  • Check the effect on:
  1. The Project Plan
  2. The justification for the project
  3. The risks
  • Report and seek approval
This product contains EVERYTHING in the publications:

Managing Successful Projects with PRINCE2 - 2005 edition
Managing successful Projects with PRINCE2 – 2009 edition
Directing Projects with PRINCE2.
The Complete Project Management package.

And much more besides - at a fantastic price.