Risk @ Work
Risk Manager – Risk@Work Risk Facilitation Toolkit
Risk is inevitable in everything we do. There may be commonplace risks that are almost inevitable, for example, the risk that a member of the team is sick for part of the project. There may be some unlikely but high impact risks, for example, the risk that the solution could cause the destruction of the organisation.
The “EFFECTIVE” Project Manager will constantly assess the risks and take action as needed. There are three possible outcomes for each risk:
take action now to avoid the risk, to reduce its likelihood, or to reduce its impact,
make contingency plans so that the team is ready to deal with the impact and mitigate the risk should it occur,
agree that it is an acceptable business risk to take no action and hope that the risk does not occur.
The process for managing risks is:
identify all realistic risks
decide whether action should be taken now to avoid or reduce the risk and to reduce the impact if it does occur
where appropriate, make plans now so that the organisation is prepared to deal with the risk should it occur
constantly monitor the situation to watch for risks occurring, new risks emerging, or changes in the assessment of existing risks.
During the Project Initiation, the headline risks should be considered as part of the overall benefit model. At this stage, you will not be dealing with a full catalogue of risks, consequences and actions. You will focus on the main areas that affect either the justification of the project or the manner in which it will be carried out.
It is unwise to rely solely on your own judgement. You would normally include some questions about risk when talking to the various participants about the project's scope and objectives. You might also instigate some specific activities to examine risk, for example additional interviews, workshops and brainstorming sessions. Where there is a specialist area involved, you should consult with an appropriate expert, eg web-server sizing, change management, etc.
A good technique for presenting these issues is to use a risk matrix showing the probability of different headline risks in comparison with their relative impact on the project's goals.
This focuses attention on the areas where the project plan will need to address key issues and where specific actions and techniques may be required. Note how this example suggests that the biggest area of concern tends to be with the "people issues". The human element of a solution is often the most overlooked aspect.
The other thing you should do early on is to decide upon the procedures and technology for managing risk. In most cases you will use some form of technology, preferably as part of a set of integrated Project Office tools. The procedures should make it easy for all participants to submit their thoughts and concerns. Always capture the thought. You may dismiss it later if appropriate, but you should always consider and assess the input.
P2P Malaysia, in partnership with Bridgit Africa, both progressive Portfolio and Project Management Company have developed a unique project risk management toolkit, aptly named R@W (Risk at Work) risk manager.
The development of R@W was initiated as a project risk assessment facilitation toolkit.
The toolkit provides for a simplistic risk evaluation, based on the PMI® PMBOK® risk management process methodology as depicted below.
The toolkit is integrated into our comprehensive solution and can be hosted/provided for on any platform including Oracle and SharePoint.
The risk manager toolkit provides for the risk assessment methodology to be conducted by an individual or risk assessment team and has an interface to Microsoft SharePoint and any other data base for archiving of risk data for a project and portfolio of projects.
The toolkit is a dynamic risk management application that allows for repeatable risk evaluation throughout the life of the project and keeps a data record of all risk events for future use on similar natured projects.
The risk toolkit has a simple user interface with a dynamic entry field base that when captured runs a automated risk register and risk prioritization model within the ambit of the PMI® PMBOK® and FMEA risk management processes and methodologies.
All risks are categorized in the following manner:
Red – High Risks
Amber – Medium Risks
Green – Low Risks
Examples of the risk toolkit are provided below:
R@W Risk at Work entrance interface
R@W Risk at Work Risk Identification
R@W Risk at Work Risk Identification
R@W Risk at Work Risk Analysis