The PMBOK teaches an approach towards project management that is recognized internationally. It can be applied to all types of projects, such as engineering, construction and software. The PMBOK divides the knowledge into Project Management Knowledge Areas, an approach that considers work as if it were being accomplished by processes.
The nine areas are:
- Project Integration Management
- Project Scope Management
- Project Time Management
- Project Cost Management
- Project Quality Management
- Project Human Resource Management
- Project Communications Management
- Project Risk Management
It is expected that various processes will overlap with others during the phases of a project, the processes may also need to interact. Processes have certain common features:
- they have an Input, including plans and designs,
- they include Tools and Techniques, applied to the abovementioned inputs,
- and they include Outputs. These outputs include the goal of the project, such as the product, or documentation.
The concept of the PMBOK’s Project Management Knowledge Areas suggests that there are only five process groups. These include:
- Initiating – deciding to perform the project,
- Planning – deciding how to run the project,
- Executing – doing the acts that comprise the project,
- Controlling and Monitoring – deciding further details about the project and measuring how the acts that comprise the project compare with the planning, and
- Closing – finishing the project, delivering and paying.
Each process can be defined as related to one knowledge area and one process group.
This term is defined in the 3rd and the 4th edition of the PMBOK.