What is PMBOK?

PMBOK is an acronym that stands for Project Management Body of Knowledge. It is a set of standards used for project management. These standards are generally found in a book called, “A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge,” which is updated over time. The sixth, and most recent, edition of this book was released in 2017. This is the first version that included the Agile Practice Guide, which is growing in popularity. It first came out in 1983 and quickly became the industry standard for project managers.

Contents of PMBOK

This body of knowledge covers everything from an introduction to project management to going through a project lifecycle, and much more. It also provides detailed information on the five project management process groups, which are Initiating, Planning, Executing, Monitoring & Controlling, and Closing. In addition, the nine standard skills and techniques of project management, which 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
  • Project Procurement Management

These are just the main subjects that are covered under PMBOK. The PMBOK book specifically, and the concept in general, will cover many other details that can be very helpful for those who are involved with project management. Even people who don’t directly manage projects but just work on them under a project manager can get a lot out of understanding these concepts.

Referencing the PMBOK

Those who are just starting to run projects will want to have this book available and read through it to ensure they understand the standard practices that are followed. Beyond that, most project managers keep a copy of this book and reference it as needed. This is a great way to have access to the standard set of information that has been proven to be effective across many different situations.


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