Summary of Changes for A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK® Guide) – Sixth Edition

Overview of Changes to Main Components:

A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK® Guide) is the Project Management Institute (PMI)® global standard that provides guidelines for managing individual projects and defines project management related concepts. PMI® updated the PMBOK® Guide from Fifth to Sixth Edition, effective 6 September 2017.

Here are the “big picture” items related to these recent PMBOK® Guide updates:

Overview of Changes to Appendices:


PMBOK® Guide – Fifth Edition Appendices:

PMBOK® Guide – Sixth Edition Changes:

Instead of an annex, The Standard for Project Management, is now a distinct part of the main components of the PMBOK® Guide, designated as Part 2. Part 1 contains all the previous main components contained in Sections 1 through 13, which aligns with the Knowledge Area from Section 4 through 13. Part 2’s structure aligns with the Process Groups and as such, includes the following sections:

  1. Introduction – a summary of much of what already exists in Part 1, Sections 1 through 3.
  2. Initiating Process Group – restructuring of the 2 processes in this group
  3. Planning Process Group – restructuring of the 24 processes in this group
  4. Executing Process Group – restructuring of the 10 processes in this group
  5. Monitoring and Controlling Process Group – regrouping of the 12 processes in this group
  6. Closing Process Group – restructuring of the single process that comprises this group (Integration: Close Project or Phase)

The remaining appendices from PMBOK® Guide – Fifth Edition, are now a subset of Part 3, in PMBOK® Guide – Sixth Edition, which includes the following subsections:

Appendices

Glossary

The glossary changes include clarifications of meaning and improvements to the quality and accuracy of translations. This version of the glossary eliminated terms if they do not appear in the Sixth Edition, or conform to everyday usage. It includes the following sections:

  1. Inclusions and Exclusions
  2. Common Acronyms
  3. Definitions

Process Groups and Knowledge Area Changes

Although the Process Groups have not changed, the figure that demonstrates them has. There is no longer a stand-alone image of the Process Groups showing their iterative nature. The new figure, 1.5, shows the Process groups in the context of a generic Project Life Cycle and the 10 Knowledge Areas.

The changes to the two Knowledge Area names appear to have different drivers:

New Knowledge Area Processes

There are three new processes in three different Knowledge areas and just one process was deleted.

First, let’s address the deleted process, 12.6 Close Procurements. Much of the content was deemed not relevant to most project managers and some of the still relevant content was incorporated into 12.5 Control Procurements or into Integration Management process 4.7 Close Project or Phase.

The rationale for this change is two-fold:

Next, let’s consider the 3 new processes:

Summary of Changes by Knowledge Area

4.0 Project Integration Management

5.0 Project Scope Management

6.0 Project Schedule Management

7.0 Project Cost Management

8.0 Project Quality Management

9.0 Project Resource Management

10.0 Project Communications Management

11.0 Project Risk Management

12.0 Project Procurement Management

13.0 Project Stakeholder Management

Knowledge Area Structure Changes

The common structure for each knowledge area changes as follows:

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