Delivering value incrementally promotes the idea of breaking down the project into smaller deliverable parts or chunks, which then allows for incremental improvements and value addition. The advantages of this approach are multifold.

  • Quality: By focusing on smaller deliverable parts, the scope of troubleshooting is significantly narrowed making it easier to maintain a higher degree of quality.
  • Risk Reduction: There’s less risk involved as only a smaller part of the project is at stake at a given time.
  • Feedback and Adaptability: Getting periodic feedback and making necessary adjustments becomes much feasible.
  • Visibility: Stakeholders can see tangible progress as each part reaches completion.
  • Customer Satisfaction: As the client sees ongoing progress, their confidence in the project typically increases, leading to higher overall satisfaction.

Table of Contents

Application of Incremental Value Delivery

To successfully implement incremental value delivery, project managers need to apply certain techniques and methodologies, many of which are highlighted in the PMP exam content outline.

  1. Agile Methodology: Agile project management is a perfect embodiment of the concept of delivering value incrementally. In an Agile project, work is divided into small bits referred to as ‘increments’ or ‘iterations’. Each iteration produces a usable product, allowing the customer to review and assess the part of the work completed and provide feedback. For example, in software development, instead of launching a fully functional application at once, developers release key features first and then iteratively add more based on user feedback.
  2. Work Breakdown Structure (WBS): By breaking down the project scope and deliverables into smaller, manageable parts, WBS enables incremental delivery. Each level of the WBS hierarchy represents a more detailed definition of the project work.
  3. Earned Value Management (EVM): EVM is another technique that helps correctly measure project performance and progress in a standard environment, enabling increments in value delivery. It integrates scope, cost, and schedule baselines to measure project performance.

Assessment of Opportunities for Incremental Value Delivery

The identification and assessment of opportunities to deliver value incrementally come during the project planning stage. Here’s a practical example:

Suppose you are managing a project to build a hospital. Instead of waiting until the entire hospital is constructed to consider whether value has been delivered, you can break the deliverables down into increments. You could consider each ward, each equipment set, and even each service that the hospital provides as an increment.

In such a scenario, a Gantt chart might look something like this:

Deliverable Duration Feedback/ Review Time
Building Layout 2 months 2 weeks
Pediatric Ward 3 months 1 month
Surgical Ward 3 months 1 month
Emergency Services 4 months 1 month

In this way, after each component is delivered, there is a set period for feedback and review before moving on to the next component. By doing so, value is added incrementally.


The ability to deliver value incrementally is a pillar of successful project management and a key concept for PMP candidates to grasp. By embracing techniques like Agile, WBS, and EVM, project managers can break projects down into manageable pieces, mitigating risk, and increasing customer value and satisfaction.

Practice Test

True or False: Delivering value incrementally involves breaking down a project into smaller, manageable parts and delivering them in stages.

  • True
  • False

Answer: True

Explanation: Incremental delivery allows for faster delivery, better risk management, and feedback, which helps to adjust the direction of the project if needed.

True or False: Incremental delivery only focuses on delivering large parts of the project at once.

  • True
  • False

Answer: False

Explanation: Incremental delivery focuses on delivering smaller parts of the project independently, allowing for faster delivery and better risk management.

In the context of project management, what does delivering value incrementally mean?

  • a) Delivering the whole project at once
  • b) Delivering the project in stages
  • c) Delivering the project only when it is perfect
  • d) Delivering the project without any modifications

Answer: b) Delivering the project in stages

Explanation: Delivering the project in stages means you’re delivering value incrementally. This allows for quicker feedback and better risk management.

What is one of the benefits of delivering a project incrementally?

  • a) Reduces feedback
  • b) Increases the time it takes to complete a project
  • c) Increases the risk of project failure
  • d) Allows for better risk management

Answer: d) Allows for better risk management

Explanation: By breaking a project down into smaller parts, teams can assess and handle potential risks better.

Select all that apply: Which of the following benefits could the project team derive from delivering value incrementally?

  • a) Faster delivery
  • b) Improved return on investment
  • c) Minimizes risk
  • d) Reduces customer involvement

Answer: a) Faster delivery, b) Improved return on investment, c) Minimizes risk

Explanation: All of the options except for option d) can be a benefit of delivering value incrementally.

True or False: When delivering value incrementally, customers or stakeholders’ feedback can be used to adjust the direction of the project.

  • True
  • False

Answer: True

Explanation: Delivering value incrementally allows for faster feedback from the customers or stakeholders that can help teams adjust the direction of the project.

True or False: Agile methodologies advocate for delivering value incrementally.

  • True
  • False

Answer: True

Explanation: Agile methodologies break down projects into smaller, manageable chunks known as sprints. This enables incremental value delivery and adaptability as per customer feedback.

When delivering value incrementally, do stakeholders have more visibility into the project’s progress?

  • a) Yes
  • b) No

Answer: a) Yes

Explanation: Incremental delivery often implies more frequent communication and updates, giving stakeholders more visibility and opportunities for feedback.

In assessing opportunities to deliver value incrementally, what factor is not important?

  • a) Scale of project
  • b) Feedback from stakeholders
  • c) Risk assessment
  • d) Project manager’s personal preference

Answer: d) Project manager’s personal preference

Explanation: Personal preferences are irrelevant to the project delivery method. It’s about what’s best for the project stakes.

An incremental delivery approach can help manage uncertainty in the project.

  • a) True
  • b) False

Answer: a) True

Explanation: A project, broken down into smaller increments, allows for managing risks and uncertainty better as it would be easier to control individual components than a whole project.

Interview Questions

Why is it important to deliver value incrementally in project management?

Delivering value incrementally provides an opportunity to gather feedback and validate assumptions early. This helps in reducing risk, adapting to changes, and providing frequent value to the customer.

What is the role of Agile project management in delivering value incrementally?

Agile project management focuses on iterative development, where requirements and solutions evolve through the collaborative effort. Agile aids in delivering value incrementally by breaking the project into small increments, making it easier to provide continuous improvements and value to the customer.

How can a project manager assess opportunities to deliver value incrementally?

A project manager can assess these opportunities by constantly reviewing the project progress, gathering customer feedback, and adjusting project phases according to the evolving needs of the customer.

How can the principles of Lean enhance the incremental delivery of value?

Lean principles advocate for eliminating waste and maximising value. By focusing on only those activities that add value and eliminating unnecessary processes, Lean can help in the efficient and incremental delivery of value.

How does the incremental delivery of value align with the concept of Minimum Viable Product (MVP)?

Incremental delivery aligns with the MVP by providing a version of a new product which allows the team to collect the maximum amount of validated learning about customers with the least effort. This will facilitate value-driven project delivery.

How does iterative development help in delivering value incrementally?

Iterative development helps to split the development process into smaller cycles or iterations. This allows teams to refine and enhance the project’s output after each iteration, thereby delivering value incrementally.

What is the role of customer feedback in delivering value incrementally?

Customer feedback is vital in incremental value delivery because it helps identify what is working well and what isn’t. This continuous feedback allows project teams to make improvements or changes to deliver more value in subsequent iterations.

How does risk management relate to delivering value incrementally?

Delivering value incrementally allows potential risk areas to be identified early with each iterative cycle. It enables more efficient risk management by providing the opportunity to address and mitigate risks sooner.

How can the project progress assessment contribute to delivering value incrementally?

Regular project progress assessments allow project managers to check if the project is on track. Such assessments enable timely modifications, ensuring the incremental delivery of value throughout the project’s life cycle.

What is the connection between value proposition and delivering value incrementally?

The value proposition communicates the unique value a product or service will bring to the customer. It guides the project team on what is important for the customer, thereby helping in planning and delivering value incrementally.

Can continuous integration help in delivering value incrementally in a project environment?

Yes, continuous integration enables continuous testing and frequent code integration. This allows for earlier detection and rectification of errors and problems, ensuring that each integration incrementally delivers more value to the customer.

How does change management relate to delivering value incrementally in project management?

Change management plays a key role in incremental value delivery. It involves adapting to changes during project life-cycles, which is central to delivering value incrementally. Through change management, project teams can better meet evolving customer requirements, which deliver incremental value.

What is the impact of stakeholder engagement on delivering value incrementally?

Stakeholder engagement facilitates better understanding of stakeholder expectations and strengthens relationships. This, in turn, influences project decisions and enables delivery of value in increments that most directly meet stakeholder needs.

How does the iterative approach to project management contribute to delivering value incrementally?

The iterative approach involves repeated cycles, which allows for continuous improvement and refinement. Through frequent iterations, the project team can continuously learn, adapt and improve, resulting in the incremental delivery of value.

Why is feedback loop important in delivering value incrementally?

The feedback loop is crucial because it ensures that improvements are being made continuously in response to feedback. It allows project teams to understand the impact of their actions and make necessary adjustments, contributing to the incremental delivery of value.

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