PRINCE2 roles and responsibilities

Discover the defined roles and responsibilities within the PRINCE2 framework and how to customize them for your project needs. Learn more by scrolling down.
Knowledge Train | PRINCE2 roles and responsibilities


PRINCE2 describes seven distinct project management team roles, each assigned a specific set of duties. It is anticipated that practitioners will customize these responsibilities to align with the specific requirements of their projects and organization. Tailoring often involves the sharing of a role among multiple individuals or the amalgamation of several roles.

Collectively, all the project management team roles bear responsibility for applying the PRINCE2 principles throughout the practices and processes of a PRINCE2 project.

As part of their PRINCE2 training course, students become acquainted with the intricacies of the project management roles. In the PRINCE2 exams, PRINCE2 Foundation students are tasked with elucidating the roles and responsibilities of the project management team, which includes responsibilities related to the creation, approval, and upkeep of the management products.

PRINCE2 Practitioner students, on the other hand, are required to exhibit a comprehensive comprehension of the roles and responsibilities within each of the processes and practices, enabling them to tailor these roles as needed.

Among the roles that can be shared in PRINCE2 are the senior user, senior supplier, project assurance, project support, and team manager roles.

Roles that cannot be combined include the executive or project assurance role combined with either the project manager, team manager, or project support role.

Project board role

The project board role is responsible for the project’s success. It has the authority to direct the project within the boundaries set by the business layer and given in the project mandate.

The project board oversees communication between the project management team and the business layer.

Depending on the project’s scale, complexity, importance, and risk, project board members may delegate their project assurance tasks to other individuals.


  1. Confirm project tolerances with the business layer.
  2. Authorize startup, initiation, management stages, and project closure.
  3. Provide overall project guidance and direction.
  4. Approves key management products including project brief, stage plans, exception plans, project initiation documentation, changes (unless delegated), completed products, end project report, and supplier contracts (when there are commercial relationships between the project and supplier).
  5. Make decisions about escalated issues.
  6. Communicate with stakeholders.
  7. Advise the project manager when required.
  8. Ensure risks are being tracked and managed effectively.
  9. Provide assurance that all products have been delivered satisfactorily, and that acceptance criteria have been met.
  10. Confirm the acceptance of the project product.
  11. Authorize follow-on action recommendations to be distributed to the business layer.
  12. Transfer responsibility for the updated benefits management approach to the business layer

Competencies and skills

  • Authority to make decisions and approve plans.
  • Authority to allocate resources to the project.
  • Capable of representing business, user, and supplier interests.
  • Be able to stay on the project throughout its duration.
  • Decision-making.
  • Delegation.
  • Leadership.
  • Negotiation.
  • Conflict resolution.


The project executive is ultimately accountable for the success of the project. In its role, the executive is supported by the senior user and senior supplier. The role requires the project is focused on accomplishing its objectives and delivering a product which aligns with the expected benefits. In non-PRINCE2 projects, this role is usually called the project sponsor.

The executive’s role is to ensure that the project delivers a return on investment. It is responsible for ensuring a cost-efficient approach to the project, whilst balancing the needs of the business, user, and supplier interests.

The project executive has responsibility for the business case throughout the project life cycle. The executive, is the key decision-maker on the project board and draws on the advice of the senior user and senior supplier when making decisions.


  1. Designs and appoints the project management team.
  2. Oversees the creation of the project brief and both the outline and detailed business cases.
  3. Ensures the project aligns with business strategies.
  4. Secures the project funding.
  5. Holds the senior supplier to account for the quality of the products it delivers.
  6. Holds the senior user to account for realizing the expected benefits for the project.
  7. Transfers responsibility for post-project benefits reviews to the business.
  8. Monitors and controls project progress at the strategic level.
  9. Escalates issues and risks if project tolerances are forecast to be exceeded.
  10. Ensures that business case risks are identified, assessed, and controlled.
  11. Makes decisions on escalated issues.
  12. Ensures the overall business assurance of the project so the project remains on target to deliver the right products to achieve the expected benefits, within its agreed tolerances.

Senior user

The senior user is responsible for specifying the needs of those who will use the project’s products, establishing two-way user communication with the project management team, and ensuring that the solution aligns with user requirements.

The senior user role embodies the interests of those who will use the project’s products (including operations and maintenance teams), those for whom the products will fulfil a goal, and those who will use the products to realize benefits.

The senior user commits the user resources necessary for stage plans and monitors delivered products against their requirements. This role may be performed by more than one individual.


  • Provides the customer’s quality expectations and defines the project’s acceptance criteria.
  • Specifies the desired project outcomes.
  • Ensures the project produces the products needed to deliver the desired outcomes and meet the user requirements.
  • Ensures the realization of the expected benefits.
  • Resolves conflicting user requirements.
  • Ensures that user resources are made available to the project when required.
  • Takes decisions about escalated issues, to ensure the safeguarding of the expected benefits.
  • Briefs and advises users about the project.
  • Maintains business-as-usual operations when the project transitions into the operational environment.
  • Performs user assurance and delegates user project assurance activities.

The senior user role specifies the expected benefits and is held accounting for their realization. To achieve this probably requires a commitment beyond the lifespan of the project.

Senior supplier

The senior supplier represents the interests of those who design, develop, procure, and implement the project’s products. This role is responsible for product quality and ensuring the project’s technical integrity. If it is required, multiple individuals may represent this role.

Depending on the project context, the business may assign an independent individual or team to provide assurance on the quality of the supplier’s products. This is especially the case if the business and supplier have a commercial relationship.


  • Assesses and confirms the viability of the project approach.
  • Ensures that design and development proposals are realistic.
  • Advises on the design, development, and acceptance methods.
  • Ensures that supplier resources are made available when required.
  • Decides about escalated issues, with a focus on safeguarding the integrity of the solution.
  • Resolves supplier requirements and priority conflicts.
  • Briefs non-technical management on supplier perspectives of the project.
  • Ensures the right quality methods are used correctly, so that products adhere to requirements.
  • Undertakes supplier assurance and delegates project assurance activities.

Project manager

The project manager takes direction from the project board and ultimately to the executive. The project manager has the authority to manage the project day by day within the tolerances set by the project board.

Its main responsibility is to ensure the project delivers the required outputs within the defined tolerances of time, cost, quality, scope, benefits, sustainability, and risk. The project manager is also responsible for ensuring the project’s outcome can deliver the benefits specified in the business case.


  • Prepares the baseline management products (except team plans), with the assistance of project assurance.
  • Prepares all reports (except checkpoint reports).
  • Maintains the project log and its constituent registers and logs.
  • Tailors the method to suit the project’s context and documents it in the PID.
  • Liaises with commercial suppliers.
  • Leads the project management team.
  • Manages the flow of information between the management levels.
  • Manages the creation, testing, and acceptance of products.
  • Monitors the overall project progress and use of resources and initiates corrective actions when necessary.
  • Establishes and manages the agreed project’s procedures.
  • Establishes and manages the project’s controls for monitoring and reporting.
  • Authorizes work packages.
  • Advises the project board of any deviations from plans.
  • Performs the team manager and project support roles unless appointed to other people.

Competencies and skills

  • Planning.
  • Time management.
  • People management.
  • Problem-solving.
  • Paying attention to detail.
  • Communication.
  • Negotiation.
  • Conflict management.

Team manager

The primary responsibility of this role is to ensure the creation of products agreed in a work package description adheres to the expected quality specifications, within the agreed timeframes, and at a cost agreed with the project board. The team manager reports to and takes guidance from the project manager.


  • Prepares team plans for an agreed work package description.
  • Creates checkpoint reports for the project manager.
  • Plans, monitors, and manages the work of a team.
  • Monitors team progress, the use of team resources, and takes corrective action, when directed by the project manager.
  • Identifies, and advises the project manager of, any issues and risks associated with the work package.
  • Advises the project manager of any team plan deviations and recommends appropriate corrective actions.
  • Handovers approved products to the project manager.
  • Liaises with both project assurance and project support roles.
  • Ensures that quality activities are planned and performed correctly and are completed within tolerances.
  • Ensures the quality register is updated correctly.
  • Manages issues and risks as directed by the project manager.
  • Assists the project manager when examining issues and risks.

Project assurance

Project assurance assures the main stakeholder interests of business, user, and supplier that the project is being managed correctly. This role must be independent from the project manager, so the project board must not assign any of its assurance responsibilities to the project manager.


  • Ensures liaison between the business, users and suppliers is working effectively.
  • Ensures risks are proactively controlled.
  • Ensures the right people write product descriptions.
  • Ensures the right people are involved in quality activities at the right time, and that quality activities are applied correctly.
  • Ensures any tailoring is suitable to the project context.
  • Ensures quality control follow-up actions are dealt with correctly.
  • Ensures an acceptable solution is developed, and that the project scope is not changing unnoticed.
  • Ensures that internal and external communications are working.
  • Ensures applicable standards are being used.
  • Ensures the needs of specialist interests (e.g. security) are being observed.

Competencies and skills

  • Capable of representing the business, user, or supplier stakeholders.
  • Has sufficient credibility to ensure that advice and guidance are followed.
  • Has sufficient knowledge of the business, user, or supplier stakeholder areas.
  • Be available for the project throughout.
  • Diplomacy.
  • Thoroughness.
  • Pay attention to detail.
  • Good communication.

Project support

The project support role by default is performed by the project manager but can also be delegated to other individuals.

The project support role is often delivered by a project management office (PMO).


  • Sets up and maintains project files.
  • Establishes document control procedures.
  • Collects data about actuals and forecasts.
  • Updates plans.
  • Administers or assists the quality review process and project board meetings.
  • Assists with writing reports.
  • Provides expertise in the user of specialist tools and techniques (e.g. planning).
  • Maintains records (including all registers and logs).
  • Administers the change control procedure.

Competencies and skills

  • Administration and organizational skills.
  • Knowledge of specialist tools and techniques.
  • Knowledge of those business standards which are applicable to the project.

Business layer

The business layer provides the project mandate which triggers the first PRINCE2 process ‘starting up a project’. It appoints the project executive role and approves the appointment of project board members. It sets tolerances for the project and decides about project-level exceptions escalated by the executive.

After the project closes it is responsible for disseminating and distributing lessons learned and follow-on action recommendations that are applicable to the wider organization. It is also responsible for the updated benefits management approach after the project closes.

This role is not considered a part of the PRINCE2 project management team.

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