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Paul Naybour Paul Naybour

Published: 2nd March 2017

Explain five differences between a Project and a Programme

1) The difference between a project and a programme is

A project will

Has defined objective- can be in line with corporate goals
Will look to deliver a single solution to the problem i.e. the customer wants a pen which is pink and has yellow dots on, they want it to write in pink ink. However this type of pen has never been manufactured by them, which is why they are undertaking a project to see if it can be done, if it’s a viable option, has a clear and defined remit and scope.
Needs a project example

2) Scope of works

Ensure there is a clear and defined set of requirements, needs and wants from a client i.e
A scope will have a clear and defined set of requirements, on what’s needed timescales, focus on what activities need to be done, reviews, a clear remit.
What is going to be made?
How this is going to be done
What the purpose of the project and definable benefits
Client contract /sign off
Inputs/out Puts
Single objective, end goal
Client sign off. A project has a fixed scope whereas a programme can have an emergent scope

3) A Raci Chart
The project will have a RACI chart –

Who is responsible?
Who is accountable?
Who needs to be consulted?
Who needs to be informed?
It states who activates need to happen
Having a clear and defined approach for the teams, what skills are needed and

This chart supports the project activities, in order to deliver the benefits and ensure they are realised and happens, as well as delivering to time, cost, quality, scope.
Not really a programme could also have a RACI chart.

A project only tends to have a single client/user who has defined the project and will be the owner of the project

The project will define the required requirements, reasons for doing and agree and define the benefits which will be the success criteria.



A programme:

Tends to deliver large change projects and multiplies of,
Normally a programme will have strategic input, vision, direction and tend to deliver corporate goals and board requirements, the project may have been instigated at board level.
Too brief needs more detail here

5) Are complex in nature

Therefore, you will need to have influencing skill and a strong communication plan, regular reviews on the required work stream and obtain sign off.
Too brief needs more detail here Too brief needs more detail here

Multiple clients/users

Will/can have multiple clients during their life cycle as at various stages throughout the project customers will come in and out dependant on the work stream, workshops maybe help bring everyone together but have a clear and defined deliverable.
Not marked


The programme will deliver benefits through the programme and this can be recognised at different stages of the life cycle, this means that different customers may have different timescales to meet their part of the programme. Not marked