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PRINCE2 vs AGILE Project Management: What’s the Difference?

Last updated on May 01,2024 129 Views

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Effective project management methodology is the driving force behind projects across industries. Among many such methods available, two of the most commonly used approaches are PRINCE2 and AGILE.

On that note, let us help you understand the differences between PRINCE2 and Agile project management, understanding the use cases and benefits of each approach.


Who Uses PRINCE2?

PRINCE2 Certification

PRINCE2, or the Projects In Controlled Environments, is a structured project management standard recognised by project managers all over the world. Established in 1989 under the guidance of CCTA, this technique was initially implemented for effective management across information technology projects. However, it is now being used as a versatile tool to manage projects from diverse domains.

As an overview, PRINCE2’s most prominent feature happens to be the customer-centric approach it takes. It emphasises that their expectations need to be met for the duration of the project lifecycle. Since the approach mostly depends on the project, it simplifies the handling of a project and also evades any challenging situations that may arise.

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Who Uses AGILE?

Agile Certification

Large organisations prefer the AGILE methodology, which enhances productivity and improves overall collaboration. The approach helps deliver high-quality services consistently while maintaining quality.

AGILE was first developed for software development projects. Nowadays, however, it can work across domains like product development and human resource.

The AGILE framework has one key feature – it helps the organisation to divide project tasks into smaller iterations. These are called sprints (time-boxed intervals). When such a sprint is undertaken, a certain subset of tasks is prioritised first.

Some of the most popular AGILE frameworks are Scrum, Kanban, and EP (Extreme Programming).

PRINCE2 vs AGILE Comparison

Till now, you must have developed a better understanding of how defined the roles in PRINCE2 and AGILE are. So, let’s examine what makes these two approaches different.


1.  PRINCE2 is a method, whereas AGILE is a philosophy

PRINCE2: This happens to be a compilation of the best practices and it is applicable across any project. The versatility makes it one of the leading reasons to get Prince2 Certified!

AGILE: This can be perceived as a mindset or philosophy that integrates a range of methodologies and frameworks together, including Scrum and Kanban.


2.  PRINCE2 is more formal, while AGILE is more informal

PRINCE2: It is well-known for its formal structure that comes with well-defined PRINCE2 roles and responsibilities as well as documentation.

AGILE: AGILE takes a more informal approach. It promotes open communication and prioritizes collaboration across cross-functional teams.


3.  PRINCE2 is more prescriptive, whereas AGILE is more adaptable

PRINCE2: This provides in-depth processes, guidelines and templates to lead dynamic projects.

AGILE: It is highly adaptable. AGILE helps teams to adapt their approach based on feedback and the evolving needs of the project.


4.  PRINCE2 is more focused on documentation, while AGILE is more focused on working on software

PRINCE2: The PRINCE2 tutorial is vital in PM as it focuses on documentation. PRINCE2 works with documents of all requirements, plan progress, risks, and other issues that can pop up during the plan period.

AGILE: AGILE mostly focuses on output. Hence, output is checked incrementally rather than created as documentation at every stage of the project.


5.  PRINCE2 is more waterfall, while AGILE is more iterative and agile

PRINCE2: The project is broken down into sequences for the PRINCE2 approach. The usual sequence is: Plan>Execute>Monitor and then Close the project.

AGILE: Here, the work is planned and broken down into tasks called sprints that may occur simultaneously.


6.  PRINCE2 is more top-down, while AGILE is more bottom-up

PRINCE2: PRINCE2 follows a top-down approach, where project managers take up the responsibility to accomplish a project.

AGILE: AGILE encourages the team to make informed decisions and adapt based on feedback and reviews. Hence, it prefers the bottom-down approach.


7.  PRINCE2 is more traditional, whereas AGILE is more innovative

PRINCE2: Includes a traditional project management structure with a comprehensive history of implementation. Its long-running history in the project management field has led it to be actively implemented across several huge organisations and government agencies worldwide to streamline project processes.

AGILE: It is relatively new and focuses on flexibility, collaboration, and responsiveness to change.


8.   PRINCE2 is more expensive, while AGILE is less expensive

PRINCE2: This method demands upfront investment in training, certification and software tools to support PM activities, which can often get pretty expensive for many organisations.

AGILE: It is comparatively less expensive to implement and emphasises simplicity, collaboration, and continuous improvement.

Final Words

While PRINCE2 vs AGILE take contrasting approaches to project management, each has a unique set of perks and roadblocks. As PRINCE2 provides an organised system for managing projects, AGILE is more focused on a flexible and collaborative approach.

Ultimately, the final choice depends on the specific needs and requirements of the project, as well as the organisational culture and context within which it operates.

Join the PRINCE2 Certification Training program from Edureka and gain insights into the project management framework. Dive into the details of integrated principles, themes, and PRINCE2 processes aligned with the latest 7th Edition Guide.



Q1: What is the difference between PRINCE2 vs AGILE project management?

One key aspect that differentiates PRINCE2 and AGILE is that PRINCE2 offers a comprehensive framework. Meanwhile, AGILE can be seen to leverage a philosophy-based approach that works on iterative development and feedback from customers.


Q2: Which is better, PRINCE2 or Scrum?

PRINCE2’s implementation is best paired with large-scale projects that demand detailed planning. Whereas Scrum is applied to projects where flexibility is being sought– this implies that the scope of these projects may change over time.


Q3: Which is better, PRINCE2 Agile or PMP?

Selection between PRINCE2 Agile and PMP ultimately depends on the nature of your project and your overall organisational preference. PRINCE2 Agile usually contain project management methodologies that may not cover other areas, such as leadership or strategic planning. Meanwhile, PMP captures a broad spectrum of project management knowledge areas.


Q4: Which is more popular, PMP or PRINCE2?

PMP is a versatile project management certification that adds value to any individual’s credibility working across diverse industries and sectors. Although capturing a small market, PRINCE2 is mainly relevant in the regions of Europe and the United Kingdom. Nonetheless, it has also started gaining recognition globally over the years.

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PRINCE2 vs AGILE Project Management: What’s the Difference?