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PRINCE2 - Managing Stage Boundaries (SB) part 3

Updating a Project Plan (SB2)

Fundamental principles

The Project Plan is used by the Project Board to measure progress.
As stages are completed or planned in detail, the Project Plan must be updated to reflect the latest understanding of the project and to allow the Project Board to revise its expectations.


The Project Plan is updated from information in the Stage Plan for the stage that is finishing, the next Stage Plan (from SB1), and any Exception Plan (from SB6) triggered by Escalating Project Issues (CS8).
Actuals are taken from the first, and the forecast duration and costs from the last two.
Details of any revised costs or end dates are passed to the next sub-process, Updating a Project Business Case (SB3).

Process description

The Project Quality Plan and Project Approach are reassessed and refined to reflect the current understanding of the project and to form a basis for updating the Project Plan.

The Project Plan is updated on the actual costs and schedule from a completed Stage Plan or Exception Plan, the new detail of activities and costs from the next Stage Plan and any knowledge about the project.
The last might be information about changes that have been agreed by the Project Board and that will cause activities in the next Stage Plan.

The Project Manager should describe in the End Stage Report why any change to the Project Plan has occurred.


The Project Manager is responsible for this sub-process assisted by Project Support and the work checked out by those with Project Assurance responsibility.

Information needs
Management informationUsageExplanation
Current Stage PlanInputThe results of the current stage may affect the project planning.
Next Stage Plan or Exception Plan.InputThe extra detail in the Stage Plan or Exception Plan may reveal the need to modify the Project Plan.
Project ApproachUpdateEvents may have occurred that modify the approach.
Issue LogUpdateThere may be Project Issues that need to be addressed at the is point.
Project Quality PlanUpdateQuality results so far may show the need to adjust the Project Quality Plan.
Project PlanUpdateRevised with actuals from the current stage and the forecast from the next Stage Plan. Also updated to reflect any changed or extra products sanctioned by the Project Board.
Risk LogUpdateChanges to the Project Plan may affect risks.

These are given in tabular form in the file ‘SB2 updating a project plan.doc’ in the product package.

Key criteria

  • How reliable are the figures for cost and schedule for the stage just being completed (especially if fed information from Team Plans)?
  • How do the results of the stage impact the Project Plan?
  • How does the next Stage Plan impact the Project Plan, Business Case and risks?
  • Did any other information come out of the last stage that will impact later stages of the project?

If the Project plan is being updated because the scope of the project has changed, make sure that there is an audit trail between cause and effect – for example, ensure that the changes are recorded as Project Issues.

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.