OPAs comprise of information, tools, documents, or knowledge that your organization possesses.
According to the Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK® Guide), Organizational Process Assets are “the plans, processes, policies, procedures, and knowledge bases specific to and used by the performing organization.”
Organizational Process Assets or OPAs will serve as a Project Manager’s best friend on any project. OPAs comprise of information, tools, documents, or knowledge that your organization possesses. Assets are a useful or valuable thing, person, or quality. These assets, along with your PMP®, will assist the Project Manager to meet the project objectives and endeavors.
OPAs are broken into categories of processes, procedures, and corporate knowledge. Some examples of OPAs are:
- Previous Project Plans
- Software Tools
- Database of Project Information
- Lessons Learned
- Knowledge Base
- Organizational policies and procedures
- Historical Information
- Project Templates
Processes and Procedures
Historical project documents such as various logs, such as risk logs, change logs, earned value data and previous schedules will provide invaluable insights into mistakes to avoids, anticipated risks, and how to approach specific stakeholders. Historical information such as cost estimates provides a starting point for your current project budget. A budget template or previous project schedule template provided a good point of departure.
Along with project documents, internal policies will significantly impact your project. Departments such as Human Resources, Quality and Procurement play a significant role during the project. Human Resources will establish what resources will be available for your project as well as ethical guidelines, while Procurement will be tasked with handling the purchasing for the project. The Quality department provides quality policies and procedures such as quality metrics, checklists, and guidance on the Quality Plan.
Over time companies amass a valuable knowledge base. This base is storing information for future retrieval. Some of this information consists of the financial databases that will provide budget information, incurred costs. Project files from the previous project including but limited to project calendars, WBS etc. Throughout the Project Lifecycle, OPAs will be updated and influence the project in a positive manner.