Project Risk Management – Here’s the Four Stages of Risk Removal.
A project risk can be defined as “an unforeseen event or condition” which may have a negative impact on the project’s objectives, in case the event takes place. Risks to a project are bound to crop up as a project progresses from being an idea mapped on a whiteboard into being a project management strategy. Different types of risk will keep on popping up at every stage of the project. Even the most skilled project manager who is working on a well-planned project will have to deal with risks. Project risks are inevitable and therefore, project managers must continually assess risks and develop plans to tackle them. The most effective way to deal with risks is to have a proper risk management procedure as well as risk removal stratagem.
The process of project risk removal involves the following four stages:
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Identification of risks is the first and most important step of risk management. Each project team member should be involved in the process of identifying potential risks to the project. Once the risks are defined, the project manager should assess whether the risk is valid enough to be dealt with by the team. Though there will always be some level of uncertainty from the beginning of the project, it is imperative to gauge which risks should actually be dealt with. The negligible ones can be ignored as the project management team cannot afford to worry about every little thing. Instead, a risk management process should be initiated to formulate and implement risk mitigation strategies to avoid any disruptions to the project.
After you have identified the risk factor and it poses continuous risk, it important that you research, analyze and evaluate the risk. Only those risks which are a real threat to the project and appropriate action is needed, have to be analyzed. In this step, a lot of people are involved such as the project manager, key stakeholders, subject-matter experts, senior management and other decision-makers. Once the analysis is complete, additional information about the risk is known. Then it is the task of the project manager and key stakeholders to decide whether the particular risk is worthy of the project team’s time and resources or if it can be left as is. A very practical approach is required when analyzing various project risks.
Once the project team is done with the identification and analysis of the risk, the next step is to determine whether the risk needs to be eliminated or accepted as a part of the project. If the risk is quite significant, then the project manager should formulate ways to mitigate the risk. It is also essential to update the project management plan to account for the risk.
The final step is to work towards removing the risk from your project. This takes place when- either the risk is accepted due to the processes in the risk management plan or is successfully mitigated. Risk removal ensures that the project team no longer needs to spend its time and effort dealing with that particular risk. This in turn gives the project manager more freedom to better utilize his resources. It is true that risks are on-going in nature and you will keep on facing different risks at every stage of your project. But with each risk removal, you are one step closer to the successful completion of your project.