What are Organizational Process Assets (OPA)?

Most organizations have developed a variety of tools and templates that help them manage their projects. These tools can be used in various ways, such as by creating contracts, assessments, and templates. Organizations can also learn more about themselves through lessons learned.

Organizational process assets (OPAs) are the various pieces of equipment that an organization can use to manage its projects. These include plans, procedures, and guidelines, which are very important for planning stages. Whether your project is short or long-term, these are must-haves.

What is an Organizational Process Asset (OPA)?

An organization's process asset is a collection of assets that are related to the various processes that the organization uses to operate its business. These include business plans, procedures, and knowledge.

The process asset may come from various sources, such as programs, projects, and documents. There are three main categories of process assets: policies and procedures, corporate knowledge base, and team and SME knowledge. Some of the most important or common OPAs are −

  • Standardized guidelines

  • Defect management processes

  • Work breakdown structure templates

  • Change control procedures

  • Project closure guidelines

  • Organizational standard processes

  • Proposal evaluation criteria

  • Risk templates

  • Financial control procedures Project files

  • Lessons learned and historical databases

  • Project schedule network diagram templates

Importance of OPA

The Organization Process Assets (OPAs) are the documents that contain all the necessary information to manage a project. These records are essential for any business planning process, regardless of the length of the project. They can help you make informed decisions and improve the efficiency of your project. OPA can be used to keep track of all the details of the project. You can also update the documents regularly.

Referring to the documentation of past projects can help speed up the project's process and increase its potential for success. It can also help smooth the management of a new project since it is very similar to the previous ones. Unfortunately, if the team members are not able to retrieve the necessary assets, the project might not get off to a fast start. OPAs can be categorized into three main categories. Following are the major OPA types with their examples −

Processes and Procedures

This is a category that describes the various elements of an organization's process assets. Examples of these are shown below. A historical record of a project's activities can provide valuable insight into the various risks and opportunities that can be encountered during a project.

Example 1: Guidelines and Criteria

A standard is a set of procedures or processes that a company uses to ensure that its products or services are of the highest quality. What are the criteria that the company uses to determine the quality of its deliverables?

Example 2: Organizational Standards

This standard refers to the policies that an organization uses to ensure that its products or services are of the highest quality. For instance, health and safety policies are often used to ensure that the company's employees are protected.

Example 3: Templates

Every organization will create a template that will be used for various processes and activities. This will be reused throughout the organization. Some examples of templates include business cases, project plans, backlog lists, risk registers, and more.

Corporate Knowledge Base

When it comes to managing project knowledge, there are two kinds of knowledge: explicit and tacit. The former refers to the information that can be decoded into words, pictures, and numbers, while the latter is the subjective or inexpressible kind, such as experiences, beliefs, and insights.

Most of the information that's stored in corporate knowledge repositories and corporate knowledge bases is explicit. This type of knowledge is then analyzed and stored in the organization.

When performing business analysis, team members or managers often turn to corporate knowledge bases to acquire the necessary information about a particular product. These repositories serve as research centers dedicated to gathering all the necessary details about a particular product.

Example 1 - Business Knowledge

The business knowledge repository can store all the details related to the products and documents that were delivered. It can be shared, enterprise-wide, or product-specific. Some of the information that can be stored in this repository include the requirements, solutions, and previous projects' results.

Example 2: History Projects Knowledge

All the documents related to past projects are archived in this repository. These include business analysis reports, performance records, project closure information, and other significant details about the projects that were done in the past.

Example 3: Issue and Defect Management Data

All the details about past projects are stored in this repository. It can be used to store various details about the projects, such as their status, actions, and issues. In some organizations, the information on defects and issues is categorized according to their preferences.

Team and SME knowledge

Although it's possible that some information related to a product may not be officially documented, black and white prints are only part of an organization's assets. In addition to being able to provide a comprehensive view of a product's technical specs, a subject matter expert can also help you analyze the data.

A "subject matter expert" is someone with a high level of expertise in a particular field. They can help you better understand a project's requirements and provide insight into the project's success. Usually, these individuals are members of the development team or have advanced qualifications.

Example 1: Organizational Changes

The various tasks and responsibilities of a department, such as the jobs of a supervisor, are under the control of a subject matter expert. This is because they have the necessary knowledge and skills to understand the operations and processes of a department. Usually, they start at a beginner level and gradually increase their knowledge to allow them to fully understand how the team works.

They are the brains of the organization, and it is important that they are regularly involved in the planning and implementation of projects. This will allow them to gain valuable insight into the project and its operations.

Example 2: Effective Communication

In certain cases, conversations can provide insights into the project. It is important that the person involved in these discussions produce a proper deliverable so that the team members can easily access it. This will allow them to keep track of all the details related to the project.


An organizational process asset (OPA) is a collection of information that can be found in an organization's documentation. It helps to smooth the process of a project and ensure its success. Having the necessary insights from the data collected can help improve the efficiency of a project. This also acts as a vital record for an organization.

People often confuse the difference between enterprise environmental factors and organizational process assets. While the former is often associated with being outside the organization, the latter is always within it. It is important to distinguish these two important factors so that you can easily identify them. The terms "organizational process assets" and "enterprise environmental factors" are commonly used by project managers and other members of the organization's management team.