OPA in Project Management And Its Types, Importance, and the Difference With EEF

OPA in Project Management And Its Types, Importance, and the Difference With EEF

Written By : Bakkah

9 Jun 2024

Table of Content

Organizational Process Assets (OPA) are internal resources, knowledge, and tools specific to an organization that enhances project success by streamlining processes and facilitating consistency in execution. 

These assets include policies, procedures, historical data, and best practices that project managers leverage to improve efficiency and outcomes. By tapping into OPA, project teams access valuable information and established processes, reducing risks and enhancing project quality.

OPA supports project management throughout the project lifecycle by serving as a repository of knowledge and resources. It enables effective planning, execution, monitoring, and control of projects, contributing to increased project success rates. Unlike OPA, Enterprise Environmental Factors (EEF) encompass external influences beyond the organization's control, such as industry standards and market conditions. 

While OPA represents internal assets tailored to the organization's needs, EEF encompasses broader external factors impacting project management. Understanding this difference is crucial for project managers to effectively utilize both OPA and EEF to navigate complexities and achieve project success.

OPA in Project Management

OPA, or Organizational Process Assets, refers to the knowledge repositories, policies, procedures, and historical information within an organization that can influence the management of projects. These assets encompass various forms of knowledge, such as lessons learned from past projects, templates for project management documents, organizational policies and guidelines, and historical data related to project performance and outcomes.

In project management, OPA plays a crucial role in providing valuable insights and resources that can guide project planning, execution, monitoring, and control. By leveraging OPA, project managers can tap into the collective wisdom and experience of their organization to improve decision-making, mitigate risks, and enhance overall project performance. Additionally, OPA serves as a foundation for standardizing processes, ensuring consistency across projects, and fostering continuous improvement within the organization.

Overall, OPA serves as a valuable asset for project managers, enabling them to leverage existing knowledge and resources to optimize project outcomes, streamline processes, and drive project success. By effectively utilizing OPA, organizations can enhance their project management capabilities and achieve greater efficiency and effectiveness in delivering projects.

Types of OPA in Project Management

In project management, Organizational Process Assets (OPA) encompass various types of organizational knowledge, processes, and resources that are used to influence and guide project management processes.

These types of OPA collectively provide project managers with valuable resources, tools, and knowledge to plan, execute, and deliver projects successfully within the organizational context. Some common types of OPA include:

1. Organizational Policies, Procedures, and Guidelines

These are formal documents that outline the policies, procedures, and guidelines governing project management within an organization. They provide a framework for how projects should be initiated, planned, executed, monitored, controlled, and closed.

2. Templates and Standardized Documentation

Organizations often develop standardized templates and documentation for various project management processes, such as project charters, plans, risk registers, communication plans, and change management forms. These templates ensure consistency and uniformity across projects and streamline the project management process.

3. Historical Project Data

Historical project data includes information and lessons learned from past projects, such as project schedules, budgets, risk registers, issue logs, and performance metrics. Analyzing this data helps project managers make more informed decisions, identify trends, and avoid repeating past mistakes.

4. Organizational Knowledge Repositories

Organizations may maintain repositories or databases containing valuable knowledge, expertise, and lessons learned from previous projects. These repositories can include project documentation, best practices, case studies, and post-project reviews, which serve as valuable resources for current and future projects.

5. Organizational Culture and Values

The culture, values, and norms of an organization shape its approach to project management. Organizational culture influences how projects are prioritized, how decisions are made, and how teams collaborate and communicate. Understanding and leveraging organizational culture is essential for successful project management.

6. Organizational Structure and Reporting Hierarchy

The organizational structure defines the reporting relationships, roles, responsibilities, and authority levels within the organization. Project managers need to understand the organizational structure to effectively navigate and collaborate with stakeholders, sponsors, and other project team members.

Importance of OPA in Project Management

Organizational Process Assets (OPA) are vital resources in project management, offering valuable tools, knowledge, and capabilities. They empower organizations to streamline project processes, improve outcomes, and achieve overall success. Through effective utilization, project managers can enhance efficiency, manage risks, and deliver value to stakeholders. The Benefits of Organizational Process Assets can be summarized as follows:

1. Standardization and Consistency

OPA, such as templates, standardized processes, and documentation, promote consistency and standardization across projects. This ensures that project management processes are executed uniformly, reducing errors, rework, and inconsistencies.

2. Learning from Experience

OPA includes historical project data, lessons learned, and best practices from past projects. By leveraging this knowledge, project managers can learn from past successes and failures, identify patterns and trends, and apply lessons learned to improve current and future projects.

3. Efficiency and Effectiveness

OPA streamlines project management processes by providing predefined processes, templates, and tools. This enhances efficiency by reducing the time and effort required to plan, execute, and control projects. Additionally, OPA enables project teams to focus on value-adding activities rather than reinventing the wheel.

4. Risk Management

OPA, such as risk registers, issue logs, and organizational risk policies, facilitate effective risk management. By documenting and analyzing historical project risks and mitigation strategies, project managers can proactively identify and manage risks, minimizing their impact on project objectives.

5. Decision Making

OPA provides valuable data, information, and knowledge that support informed decision-making throughout the project lifecycle. Whether it's selecting appropriate project management methodologies, allocating resources, or addressing project issues, OPA serves as a foundation for making sound decisions.

6. Organizational Knowledge Management

OPA contributes to the accumulation and management of organizational knowledge related to project management. By maintaining repositories of best practices, lessons learned, and organizational expertise, OPA enables continuous improvement in project management processes and practices.

Categories of Organizational Process Assets 

Organizational Process Assets (OPA) encompass a wide range of resources, documents, and knowledge that organizations utilize to support their project management processes. 

By categorizing Organizational Process Assets into these distinct categories, organizations can effectively manage and leverage these valuable resources to enhance project management practices, improve project outcomes, and drive organizational success. These assets can be categorized into several key categories, including:

1. Processes and Procedures

This category includes documented processes, procedures, and methodologies that outline how various project management activities should be performed within the organization. Examples may include project management frameworks, lifecycle models, governance processes, and quality management procedures.

2. Templates and Forms

OPA often includes standardized templates, forms, and checklists that project teams use to document project information, track progress, and communicate with stakeholders. Examples include project charters, work breakdown structures (WBS), project plans, status reports, change request forms, and meeting agendas.

3. Historical Data and Lessons Learned

This category encompasses historical project data, performance metrics, and lessons learned from past projects. Organizations capture and analyze this information to identify trends, assess performance, and inform decision-making. Examples include project schedules, budgets, risk registers, issue logs, post-project reviews, and retrospectives.

4. Organizational Policies and Guidelines

OPA includes organizational policies, guidelines, and standards related to project management. These documents establish rules and expectations for project execution, resource management, risk management, quality assurance, and other aspects of project delivery. Examples include project management methodologies, quality management standards, and compliance requirements.

5. Organizational Knowledge Repositories

This category comprises repositories or databases that store and manage organizational knowledge related to project management. These repositories may contain best practices, case studies, expert insights, research findings, and other knowledge assets that support project management activities.

6. Tools and Software

OPA encompasses tools, software applications, and technology platforms that support project management processes. These tools may include project management software, collaboration platforms, document management systems, scheduling tools, and communication tools.

What is the Difference between OPA and EEF?

Organizational Process Assets (OPA) and Enterprise Environmental Factors (EEF) are essential components in project management. OPA consists of internal resources and knowledge unique to an organization, supporting project management processes.

On the other hand, EEF encompasses external conditions that affect project execution but are beyond the organization's control. While both are influential, OPA is internal and specific to the organization, while EEF is external and encompasses broader environmental factors. The key differences between them are:





Organizational Process Assets refer to the internal resources, documents, and knowledge specific to an organization that can be used to support project management processes. These assets are developed and accumulated over time within the organization and are tailored to its unique needs and practices.

Enterprise Environmental Factors encompass the external conditions and influences that impact the way projects are executed within an organization. These factors are not under the control of the project team and may include industry standards, regulatory requirements, market conditions, organizational culture, and stakeholder expectations.


Organizational Process Assets are owned and controlled by the organization. They are managed, updated, and maintained by the organization's project management office (PMO) or relevant departments to ensure their relevance and applicability to project management practices.

Enterprise Environmental Factors are external to the project team and are not directly controlled by the organization or the project manager. While organizations may have some influence over certain environmental factors, such as company policies or industry standards, many EEF are beyond their control.


Organizational Process Assets are organization-specific and tailored to the unique needs, processes, and practices of the organization. They reflect the organization's history, culture, capabilities, and lessons learned from past projects.

Enterprise Environmental Factors are external conditions that may vary from one project to another and are not specific to any single organization. They include industry standards, market conditions, legal regulations, cultural norms, and technological advancements that may affect project execution.

Similarities Between OPA and EEF

While OPA and EEF differ in their origins and characteristics, they both play integral roles in shaping the project environment and influencing project outcomes. Understanding their similarities helps project managers effectively leverage these factors to optimize project performance and achieve project success. While Organizational Process Assets (OPA) and Enterprise Environmental Factors (EEF) serve distinct purposes in project management, they share some similarities:

1. Influence on Project Management

Both OPA and EEF influence various aspects of project management, including project planning, execution, monitoring, and control. They provide contextual information and resources that project managers use to make informed decisions and manage project constraints effectively.

2. Impact on Project Success

OPA and EEF contribute to project success by providing valuable inputs and resources that help project teams achieve project objectives. They shape the project environment and influence project outcomes by affecting factors such as project scope, schedule, budget, quality, and risk management.

3. Dynamic Nature

Both OPA and EEF are subject to change over time. Organizational Process Assets may evolve as organizations learn from previous projects, update policies and procedures, or adopt new tools and technologies. Similarly, Enterprise Environmental Factors may change due to shifts in market conditions, regulatory requirements, stakeholder expectations, or technological advancements.

4. Customization for Projects

Project managers often customize their approach based on the specific OPA and EEF relevant to their projects. They leverage OPA and EEF to tailor project management processes, methodologies, and strategies to meet project requirements and address unique project challenges.

What is an Example of OPA and EEF?

Here are examples of Organizational Process Assets (OPA) and Enterprise Environmental Factors (EEF):

OPA in Project Management Example

  • Organizational templates and standardized processes for project management, such as project charters, project management plans, and risk registers.
  • Lessons learned from previous projects, including success stories, best practices, and documented failures.
  • Organizational policies and procedures related to project management, such as change control processes, procurement guidelines, and quality assurance standards.
  • Knowledge repositories containing historical data, project documentation, and archived project information.

EEF in Project Management Example

  • Industry standards and regulations govern the specific sector in which the project operates, such as ISO standards for quality management or safety regulations in construction projects.
  • Market conditions, including supply and demand dynamics, economic trends, and competitor activities may impact project timelines, costs, or resource availability.
  • Legal and regulatory requirements imposed by governmental bodies or industry regulators, such as environmental regulations, building codes, or data privacy laws.
  • Organizational culture and governance structures, including management styles, decision-making processes, and communication norms influence project management practices within the organization.
  • Stakeholder expectations and external influences from clients, customers, suppliers, and other project stakeholders shape project objectives, scope, and deliverables.

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In summary, the importance of OPA lies in its ability to support project management processes and decision-making throughout the project lifecycle. OPA serves as a repository of valuable information and resources that enable project teams to effectively plan, execute, monitor, and control projects.

By tapping into OPA, project managers can access relevant data, lessons learned from previous projects, and established processes, thereby reducing risks, improving project quality, and increasing the likelihood of project success. 

Additionally, OPA fosters continuous improvement within the organization by capturing and disseminating knowledge gained from project experiences. Moreover, the key difference between OPA and Enterprise Environmental Factors (EEF) lies in their origin and scope.