PRINCE2® Project Product Description Template

The project product description is a special form of product description that defines what the project must deliver in order to gain acceptance.

It is used to:

  • gain agreement from the user on the project’s scope and requirements
  • define the customer’s quality expectations
  • define the acceptance criteria, method and responsibilities for the project.

The product description for the project product is created in the starting up a project process as part of the initial scoping activity, and is refined during the initiating a project process when creating the project plan. It is subject to formal change control and should be checked at management stage boundaries (during managing a stage boundary) to see if any changes are required. It is used by the closing a project process as part of the verification that the project has delivered what was expected of it, and that the acceptance criteria have been met.

The following criteria apply to a project product description:

  • The purpose is clear.
  • Composition defines the complete scope of the project.
  • Acceptance criteria form the complete list against which the project will be assessed.
  • Acceptance criteria address the requirements of all the key stakeholders (e.g. operations and maintenance).
  • The project product description defines how the users and the operational and maintenance organizations will assess the acceptability of the finished product(s). It should ensure that:
    - all criteria are measurable
    - each individual criterion is realistic
    - the criteria are consistent as a set. For example, high quality, early delivery and low cost may not go together
    - all criteria can be proven within the project life (e.g. the maximum throughput of a water pump) or by proxy measures that provide reasonable indicators as to whether acceptance criteria will be achieved post-project (e.g. a water pump that complies with design and manufacturing standards of reliability)
  • Quality expectations have been considered, including:
    - characteristics of the key quality requirements (e.g. fast/slow, large/small, national/global)
    - the elements of the customer’s quality management system that should be used
    - any other standards that should be used
    - the level of customer/staff satisfaction that should be achieved if surveyed.

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