Project, Programme and Portfolio Processes

Here we provide two process models, one for projects and programmes and one for portfolios. Most other guidance describes separate processes for projects and programmes but detailed comparison demonstrates that they are fundamentally the same.

In fact the artificial distinction of ‘projects’ and ‘programmes’ as different entities introduces confusion and places constraints on competent project/programme managers when undertaking initiatives that are a combination of the two (as conventionally defined).

This section describes the general characteristics of each process and then, as with the functions in the knowledge section, explains how these can be applied as complexity increases from simple projects to complex programmes. This supports the principle that describing projects and programmes as two, mutually exclusive types of initiative has more to do with human nature than with real, practical differences.

Although we define two types of portfolio (standard and structured) the process model is the same for both.


Project & Programme Portfolio
Project and Programme Processes Portfolio Process Model
Sponsorship Portfolio Initiation
Definition Portfolio Management
Identification Portfolio Co-ordination
Delivery Portfolio Governance
Benefits Realisation