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What Everybody Should Know about Controlling Risks

The best type of medicine is preventive medicine, and this is why risk management is such an important practice. Unfortunately, project managers too often become engulfed in projects that they fail to control known risks. In a post for The Project Risk Coach, Harry Hall discusses how to better control risks.

Total Control?

Some may argue that the goal should not be to “control” risks, because risks are entities that are rife with uncertainty. No one can ever truly know all of the uncertainties. Consequently this would mean no one, not even the most prestigious project manager, can have full control of a risk. However, there are ways that a project manager can gain a better handle on threats so that he or she can better steer the project to success. There are five steps to risk control:

  1. Implement a risk response plan.
  2. Follow identified risks.
  3. Monitor residual risks.
  4. Discover new risks.
  5. Evaluate effectiveness.

For every single individual risk or sets of risks there should be a plan of attack. This may mean an immediate response, or it may mean that a more subtle move needs to be made. The project manager should be working closely with the risk owner to ensure that responses are effective.

Once a risk has been identified it should be tracked. The project manager and the risk owner determine the trigger conditions associated with the known risk, and they evaluate the metrics.

If risks are becoming too costly to reduce, they should still be monitored. The risk owner can help develop a plan on how to continue in a cost-effective fashion.

As the project progresses, new risks will inevitably sprout up. When the project reaches a new milestone or there is an occurrence of a major risk, there needs to be an assessment for any other risks lurking in the shadows.

PIER-C risk management stands for: plan, identify, evaluate, respond, and control. After PIER-C is implemented, it should be evaluated for effectiveness.

You can read the original post here:

About Danielle Koehler

Danielle is a staff writer for CAI’s Accelerating IT Success. She has degrees in English and human resource management from Shippensburg University.

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