Project Management Plan as an input

My understanding of the Project Management Plan is that it tells us how to manage the different processes of the project (in addition of other purposes). Hence I would expect to have it as an input of allmost all project process, but it is not the case.

e.g. Define scope, create WBS.

Is my understanding of the project management plan wrong?


Here is an extract from the pmbok 4th edition about the project management plan:


The project management plan defines how the project is executed, monitored and controlled, and closed.


Level of implementation of each selected process,

Description of the tools and techniques to be used for accomplishing those processes, and how the selected processes will be used to  manage the specific project.

How work will be executed to accomplish the project objectives.


admin's picture


this change was done for fourth edition and there was quite a debate on whether it was intuitive or not. See below links:

Extract from the link: A final change to the inputs and outputs is that we did not have the project management plan as an input to any planning processes. While understanding that planning takes place throughout the project and that the planning project group is not a phase, we felt it would be clearer to have the specific planning process outputs as inputs to developing the project management plan and not the other way around. However, in the executing and monitoring and controlling process groups the project management plan is a key input, and the specific components are listed under the project management plan. For example, the cost performance baseline is an element of the project management plan and an input to the Control Costs process. The input is listed as the project management plan with a notation that the element in the project management plan is the cost performance baseline. This approach brings a cohesive and consistent approach to the processes across the document.


Hi Admin Sir,


If you refer to your statement you say CPB or Cost Performace Baseline is an Input to Control Cost where as in reality it is NOT.


Kindly look into it.


Thanks, KK...

admin's picture


Check page 181 pmbok 4th edition.

CPB is an input since cpb is compared with actual results to see if any change or corrective action is necessary. As a rule in most monitoring and controlling process groups you will see that one of the inputs will be "data on past performance"


Hi Admin Sir,


I did check page 181 of PMBOk-4thed and it talks about Schedule development. Nothing on costs.


Baselines, apparently, are part of the PMPs. So if they are listed specifically as an input or no is secondary since PMP is there and BLs are part of it.


At times, I feel just to make PMP exam tough, PMI deliberately has created a barrage of confusing elements, so to speak.



Found this old thread. Regarding your last line I 100% agree with you. Part of it is due to the fact that this book is written by humans so it has some contradictions.

And regarding Cost Performance Baseline, yes it is an input to Control Costs but not directly. If you read then you will see that it is part of "Project Management Plan"

Here is what PMBOK says about it:

The project management plan described in Section contains the following information that is used to control cost:

Cost performance baseline: The cost performance baseline is compared with actual results to determine if a change, corrective action or preventive action is necessary.

In short  - All Processes of Planning Process group  - 20Nos comes under Project management Plan.

Though in Project Intigration management intigrated planning covers all planning  - hence 4.2 number process is termed as a DEVELOP PROJECT MANAGEMENT PLAN and its output is project management plan.

Whereas other Planning processes or individual and specific.

And thus Project management plan will not be input for above 19 planning processes, while these all 19 are input for develop project management plan. (Just reverse) - See inputs of DEVELOP PROJECT MANAGEMENT PLAN.  - outputs from planning processes.



Thanks for the clarification.

If I understand it correctly,

1) the different management plans (e.g. project scope management) are created by the develop project management plan process and not by the planning processes of each knowledge areas (e.g. project scope management created during scope planning processes), right?

2) The creation of the different management plans occurs at the end of the planning process as we need first to complete the planning processes of other knowledge areas, right?

 According to the post, scope, time and schedule knoweldge area have their management plans developed by the "develop project management process". Hence they are not an input of this process but an output.

So I would expect them to be used as an input of their respectives planning processes, but it is not the case.

 Who born 1st CHIKEN or EGG

SO cycling of processes rather better matrix of cycling processes is the concept.

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