Project Vs Program : Difference Between a Program and a Project

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Sep 27, 2021

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10 mins

Despite sharing similarities, there is a great difference between program and project. So to walk you through that path, we have curated a list of differences so that you are aware of it and have timely delivery. But first, let’s have a quick glance at the definition of both project and a program.

What is a Project?

A single endeavor that is very specific and delivers an output that is tangible, is regarded as a project. It is created for the delivery of one or more business products that are defined with a business case. They do not have a longer duration and they end. It comes under the responsibility of the project manager to make sure that the intended task is delivered within the time frame as well as under budget.

What is a Program?

A program can be defined as a bundle of linked projects which are managed as a single package and delivered. Programs run for a long time that may include years and also, they do not have a fixed timeline associated with them. The responsibility of the program manager is to make sure that all the projects are aligned and working to attain the maximum benefit with the program.

You can learn more about project management and earn your PMP certification to have a better understanding of projects. Now that we have familiarized ourselves with the definition, let’s dig into the difference between program and project.

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 What are the Key Differences Between Project and Program?

In this article, we are going to discuss about difference between project and program for the following points:

  1. The activity which has specified objectives and is carried out on a temporary basis to develop a product or a service is called a project. Conversely, a program is the combination of all the projects that are linked to each other for an overall benefit.
  2. The project is content-specific which is very exact and specific. On the other hand, the program is very context-specific which relates to all the projects that are closely linked with each other for an ultimate goal for an organization. With the pmp course, you will come to learn how projects are created and how maximum efficiency can be achieved.
  3. Talking about the scope of project and program, a project is very well defined and is limited to output, whereas, the program covers a lot of things and is very broad and adjustable. The project works on a single functional unit, on the other hand, the program works on various other functional units.
  4. If we go to the project timeline, it is distinct and also very much specified. But in the program, the timeline is not fixed; it goes on for a longer duration and is executed in business which continues to yield results for the concerned organization.
  5. The deliverables for projects are specified but the program is generally related to the benefits that come out after implementing those projects in the enterprise.  The project delivers tangible outputs which are gained after it is completed, whereas collective benefits of projects are concerned in a program. The program is concerned with the general outcomes for the growth and survival of the company.
  6. To check the effectiveness of the project, various factors like product quality, cost efficiency, compliance, and timeliness along with satisfaction of customers are evaluated. As opposed to these parameters, in the program, it is based on the fact whether it has fulfilled the benefits and needs for which it was implemented in the organization.

After projects vs programs, let’s find differences between the roles of project managers and program managers below:

1. The responsibility of the project manager includes the monitoring and controlling of various project tasks whereas, a program manager manages and controls all the projects that are concerned within the program. With the right pmp training, you can learn a lot about these roles.

2. The project manager focuses on the project staff that include technicians and specialists. On the other hand, program managers manage the relationship between the managers and their teams. Their focus also includes managing conflicts and freeing up resources.

3. The project manager is responsible for creating a detailed project plan that will include resource planning, cost, and timely delivery of the project. Simultaneously, high-level plans are created by the program manager that are used by the project manager as a guide and then develop a detailed plan from them.

Do you want to become a project or program manager? Get yourself trained and certified with the best course for PMP certification online. With StarAgile, you can find the best certification courses that can set your career as a project or program manager.


Projects and programs are important elements in the benefit of synergy. While the project is all about doing things in the right way, the program focuses on doing the right things in the organization.


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