Risks are potential future events or conditions that can have negative effects on the outcome of a project. Risk management is the processes and procedures that enable managers to identify risks, assess them, and arrive at plans for handling them.
Some form of risk management is appropriate for nearly all projects. The extent to which it is used varies from project to project depending on the importance of the project, size and complexity of the project, and level of uncertainty associated with it.
Risk management should be proactive. If implemented correctly, it helps to anticipate where a process or task may fail. If a project manager suggests that a task will take two weeks, but the resource assigned to it says it may take up to four weeks, the proactive project manager may want to create a risk item with a link to the task. After that, everyone who needs to can see the discrepancy. The reactive project manager may decide and hope that a problem does not occur before doing anything. When the problem occurs, in this example the task already took four weeks to finish, it may be too late to do anythingthe impact on other project tasks has already occurred.
A project risk management plan must be developed by the project team, and its level of detail should be appropriate to the size and importance of the project.For example, building a backyard patio doesn't require sophisticated risk analysis. On the other hand, building a high-rise condominium building complex for 15,000 people requires a sophisticated risk management planthe failure of one of the major subcontractors can lead to significant and costly delays, not to mention many unhappy customers.
Risk is the possibility of an event that, if it occurred, would have a negative effect on a project. After a project begins, new events that were difficult to anticipate might create new risks. For example, unseasonably cold weather might seriously impact the end date of a construction project in southern California.
This section of the chapter further discusses what you can do to prepare for risks.
The steps involved in preparation of a risk management plan in the context of the EPM solution include the following:
Using the Project Professional client, look specifically for
Risk Tracking Using Project Server
Using the risk tracking feature in the Project Professional or PWA client, project managers can record, update, review, and escalate project risks for their projects. Team members can keep track of risks assigned to them for resolution.
The Risk module in Project Professional does not provide cross-project risk tracking and reporting or sophisticated risk analysis tools based on Monte Carlo analysis.
The Risk module interface exposed in the Project Professional client is the same interface available in the PWA client. You might prefer to use Project Professional for risks, however. Perhaps as a project manager you do most of your project plan work in the Project Professional client, and there is no reason for having to open another client interface if you can do your work in the Project Professional client.
When risk items are created, project managers can specify for each risk item the following default attributes:
In addition to the default risk attributes in the preceding list, you can link the risk to other risks, issues, documents, and project tasks.
Collaboration Features for Risk Management in Project Professional
The Risks page helps you document and track the risk events that could negatively affect your project. You must have WSS installed to use the Risks feature.
To access the Risks module, select Risks from the Collaboration menu bar.
The first page that displays for risks is a list of all projects you are assigned to or own. Depending on your security permissions, you may view a list of all projects or a subset of projects. Select the hyperlink for the project you want to see risk items for.