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What is a project and what is a programme?

  Projects Programmes
Definition ‘A project is a temporary organization that is created for the purpose of delivering one or more business products according to an agreed Business Case.’ ‘A programme is a temporary flexible organization structure created to coordinate, direct and oversee the implementation of a set of related projects and activities in order to deliver outcomes and benefits relating to an organization’s strategic objectives.
  • Driven by deliverables
  • Has a defined start and end (finite)
  • Bounded and scoped deliverables
  • Delivers product or outcome
  • Benefits usually realized subsequent to project closure
  • Shorter timescale
  • Driven by a desired ‘end state’ vision for the business
  • No predefined path
  • Delivers changes to the business capability
  • Coordination of products/outcomes of a number of related projects
  • Benefits realized during the programme and afterwards
  • Longer timescale (may have a lifespan of several years)
Management focus
  • Detailed specification of how product/s will be created and delivered
  • Control of activities to produce products


  • High-level specification (of why/what)
  • Stakeholder management
  • Benefit realization
  • Manages dependencies between related projects
  • Manages change acceptance and transition management
  • Integration with corporate strategies



  1. Using PRINCE2™ and MSP® Together byAndy Murray (TSO, 2010)
  2. Managing Successful Programmes (TSO, 2007)
  3. Managing Successful Projects with PRINCE2 (TSO, 2009)

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Madisakwane, Phalenyane P
2017-01-11, 10:49
Hello Abigail

Compliments to the new year. I hope you entered well and looking forward to the opportunities presented in 2017.

I would like to … read more
Mphoza Masemola
2015-05-21, 17:22
Afternoon Matium,

Thanks again Matium for you excellent method of training….there is no ways I would have passed without following your … read more
Segomotso Matswiri
2015-03-13, 09:25
The instructor was very articulate of issues and was very easy to follow and understand.
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