PMBOK 6th Edition Changes Vs PMBOK 5th

PMBOK 6th Edition Changes Vs PMBOK 5th
PMBOK 6th Edition Changes Vs PMBOK 5th

In September 2017 PMI released the revised edition of The Guide To The 6th Edition. The PMBOK guide fifth edition was published in 2013 and was due for an update. PMBOK is an indispensable resource for project managers as well as for PMP aspirants. The guide includes the standard for project management and also suitable for use in any industry.  So what exactly has changed in The Guide to The Project Management Body of Knowledge?

Major Changes To The PMBOK 6th Edition

Following list enumerates major changes to PMBOK Guide 6th edition:

  • The PMBOK guide is now almost a thousand page manual.
  • The new standard also includes Agile Practice Guide.
  • Number of Project Management Processes have increased from 47 to 49.
  • new processes introduced.
  • process removed.
  • The Role of The Project Manager is a new section in PMBOK guide sixth edition.
  • PMBOK guide 6th edition has improved readability due to good number of tables and charts.
  • The following 4 new sub sections appear across all knowledge areas
    • Key concepts
    • Trends and Emerging Practices In Project Management
    • Tailoring Considerations
    • Agile / Adaptive Environment Considerations

PMBOK 6th Edition Knowledge Area Wise Changes

Integration Management

  • The executing process group has a new process called Manage Project Knowledge. As a result, number of processes in this knowledge area has increased to 7.

Scope Management

  • The revised PMBOK guide establishes relationship between Project Manager and Business Analyst.
  • It also has reference to
    • Requirements Management – A Practice Guide
    • Business for Practitioners – A Practice Guide

Schedule Management

  • Project time management renamed to project schedule management. Hence number of processes in this knowledge area has reduced to 6.
  • Estimate activity resources has moved to Resource (Human Resource) Management.

Quality Management

  • Perform quality assurance renamed to Manage Quality.

Also read: Quality Control Data Representation Tools

Resource Management

  • Human resource management renamed to Resource Management.
  • Estimate activity resources, initially under Time (Schedule) management is now part of Resource Management. Therefore, number of processes in this knowledge area has increased to 6.
  • Moreover, the 6th edition has a new process called Control Resources.

Communications Management

  • Control communications renamed to Monitor communications.

Risk Management

  • Introduced a new process called Implement Risk Responses.Hence number of processes in this knowledge area has increased to 7
  • Control Risks renamed to Monitor Risks.

Procurement Management PMBOK 6th Edition Changes

  • This knowledge area has seen the most interesting change. The Close Procurement process appears as an output of Control Procurement Process. Therefore, number of processes in the knowledge area has reduced to 3.

Stakeholder Management PMBOK 6th Edition Changes

  • Plan stakeholder management is now Plan Stakeholder Engagement.
  • Control stakeholder engagement is now Monitor Stakeholder Engagement.

PMBOK 6th Edition Changes Summarized

Following knowledge area chart summarizes major differences between the 5th edition and the 6th edition of Guide to Project Management Body of Knowledge. The figure below also shows specific changes to pmbok 6th edition process chart.

pmbok 6th edition process chart
PMBOK Process chart showing knowledge areas and process group changes

Also read: PMP Exam 2021 Six Updates You Must Know

PMBOK 6th Edition Process Chart

The following table provides distribution of 49 project management processes across ten knowledge areas and five process groups in the sixth edition of PMBOK.

Knowledge AreaInitiatingPlanningExecutingMonitoring and ControllingClosingTotal
Project Integration Management112217
Project Scope Management426
Project Schedule Management516
Project Cost Management314
Project Quality Management1113
Project Resource Management2316
Project Communications Management1113
Project Risk Management5117
Project Procurement Management1113
Project Stakeholder Management11114

The tabular representation of the data in addition to the figure above gives a fair understanding of changes to processes in PMBOK 6th edition.

Changes to PMP Exam

As a result of changes to PMBOK guide, it is pertinent to ask – Will this change affect PMP certification examination?

Certainly, the answer to this question is, Yes! as a result of new PMBOK Guide the PMP exam will change.

Thus, PMI on it's website has indicated that the PMP exam will change with effect from 26 March 2018. If you wish to take the test based on PMBOK 5th edition schedule it on or before 26 March 2018.

Following is the list of useful posts for pmp certification

The following resources will be of help to those preparing for the PMP certification examination .


To conclude this was a brief overview of what's new in Guide to Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK) 6th edition. There are also a number of changes to the tools and techniques of each processes. A detailed study of the standard will further enhance the understanding of these changes.

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