Project Risk Analysis
In the first part of the series ‘Back To Basics’ of Risk Management, we looked at what is risk & why you should worry about it. Also, it was deliberated in brief, why risk management is inherently a proactive characteristic of a project manager. In this part, we will look at what is risk management, lifecycle of risk in risk management process and what is project risk analysis.
What is Risk Management?
It is a systematic process:
Risk management is the systematic approach of using practices, procedures and policies of identifying, analysing, tracking, controlling, delegating and communicating risks.
It is an Art as well as Science:
Risk Management is a science as well as art. The science part involves identification, evaluation and prioritization of risks along with planned, organized effort to reduce, track and control the probability and impact of undesirable occurrence. The art part involves correct evaluation, prioritization and response planning. It is deliberate to mix science and art of risk management. The judgment of assessing & building response plan in its subjective part is an art but the systematic & repeated risk tackling approach with set of guidelines can evolve as a science. Like project planning, risk management evolves continuously.
At a higher level, risk management involves
- Identification and recording of risk
- Evaluation of the possibility that can be attributed with the occurrence of risk
- Determine the vulnerable consequences that can be attributed to risk
- Identify strategies to reduce impact that may arise with occurrence of risks
- Prioritize risk reduction approach based on a strategy
- Assign resources to manage the risk in accordance with risk response plan
- Review & close the risk
What is Project Risk Analysis?
Establish the Context: The important element in Risk Management is establishing a context. It involves, knowing what are organization’s objective, project’s objective, stakeholder’s expectations, etc. It also involves, understanding what differ from organization to organization, from one project to another, the eco-system and so on. Project risk analysis is best done as a group activity.
- Identify risk: In a stakeholder meeting, the entire group can get involved & together they can enlist the incidents/risks which will be hindrance to meet your project objective
- Identify the reasons: The next thing you need to do is to identify all those things that may lead such risk to occur e.g. if your supplier is unable to provide raw material on time, you need to identify the reasons for such occurrence or your key resource may be so over-burdened that he might look out for another job, etc.
- Identify your Gears: Next you will have to identify all the nuts & bolts in your hands that can be used to reduce likelihood of the risk from happening (avoidance) and, if it occurs, utilize all that in your control to reduce its adversities. In above case, project manager can deploy additional resource to assist a given key resource.
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