What is a project risk assessment checklist?
A project risk assessment evaluates all identified project risks. Project managers can thereby efficiently allocate resources to high-priority risks. In addition, the project risk assessment forms the basis for creating a risk mitigation plan. Routinely conducting a project risk assessment also ensures that the project is efficient and successful.
When you use a project risk assessment checklist, you uncover risks more easily and can respond to them early. In a checklist, all key factors that need to be checked can be recorded, structured, and arranged by topic. Once you have checked these, you can then evaluate the risks and immediately initiate countermeasures. New empirical values are constantly flowing into this project risk assessment checklist so that it can be optimized for each application.
This article explains the following points:
Why a project risk assessment should not be missing
Risks cannot be avoided when implementing a project, but their potential danger can be determined. A project risk assessment clearly shows how dangerous a risk can become for the project and company and how likely it will occur. Once risks, their consequences, and probabilities of occurrence are known and quantified, management can select specific protective measures and incorporate them into project planning.
Assessing and monitoring risks in a project through risk analysis is intended to steer the project in a low-risk direction. To do this, however, transparency must be created for management and specialist departments. Risk analysis gives them the transparency they need to generalize and optimize decision-making processes and thus reduce risks.
Risks in a project are nothing static. They can change in the course of a project, be added, or be removed. As a result, they have a significant impact on the success of the project. Therefore, a project risk assessment must be performed several times during a project to determine the necessary need for action and create a constant security level.
Project risk assessment as component in project risk management
Project risk assessment is only one component in project risk management. Without the other components, project risk assessment is not only difficult but also inefficient.
For example, if you neglect risk identification, it can lead to less important risks being included in the project risk assessment. Focusing on risks that have a little negative impact on the project not only costs resources, but also means that urgent risks may go unrecognized. The ISO 31000 framework is a basis for designing and maintaining risk management for organisations – Use our free ISO 31000 checklist.
It is also important to set up a risk monitoring system after the initial project risk assessment. Without monitoring, you won’t be notified when a risk arises and won’t have a chance to mitigate it.
Evaluate project risks properly
To make your project a success, it’s important to evaluate project risks regularly. To do this, you should know how to evaluate risks properly. The following steps will show you the best way to go about evaluating risks from the project risk assessment:
Step 1: Work with what you have
First, categorize your identified risks into expected and potential risks. Expected risks are those that have already occurred during previous projects. Potential risks may occur, but the probability is comparatively low.
In the next step, you evaluate the expected risks according to the classification critical or comfortable risk. If there are sufficient resources to address the risk, it is a comfortable risk. If there are not, it is a critical risk. You repeat this process for the potential risks.
Finally, for each risk, you determine at what point in the project it could occur, who will be affected, and what impact it will have on project outcomes. You then create a comprehensive risk mitigation plan that covers all risks.
Step 2: Prepare for the unexpected
Even the best project risk assessment can’t account for all risks. That’s why you need to create room for unidentified risks or risks you didn’t know about before this project. Since it’s difficult to prepare for something you don’t know about, it’s good to create very general contingency plans. You can then adapt and apply these to the different types of risks.
Step 3: Make sure everyone knows what they are doing
Transparency is important to address risks effectively. Train your employees on what to do when risks arise and how to handle them with contingency plans. Risk monitoring can also be entrusted to just individual team members.
Step 4: Adapt quickly
Watch for continued potential risks throughout the project. Motivate coworkers to alert you to risks. Even the most experienced project managers can miss important risks during risk identification or even during the project. In addition, different perspectives on risks can be a great help in project risk management.
Step 5: Record what you learned
The project risk assessment is a dynamic process, so risk identification, mitigation, and monitoring must be re-evaluated repeatedly. Therefore, after each risk analysis, you should note what worked and what didn’t. You can also assess what needs to be done to make the project risk assessment more effective next time.
What Does A Project Management Risk Assessment Entail?
Hacking and breaches, failed storage, lost or compromised hardware, and corrupted files are just examples of technology risks in project management. These incidents can ruin everything your team has worked on for months.
You can’t predict the future. But with risk assessment, you can prepare for unpredictable and unexpected events that might wreak havoc on your project. Risk isn’t only about the physical safety of your team members. It involves technology, communication, operations, and costs. There are five elements of project management risks:
- Risk event – A risk event is any incident that could have a negative or positive effect on your project’s success.
- Risk timeframe – It refers to the time during which a risk will affect the project if it occurs.
- Probability – Risk probability is the likelihood of a risk taking place. It can be based on historical data.
- Impact – Impact tells you how much damage the risk, if it occurs, would cause to your project.
- Factors – Factors are any situation that may lead to one or more project risks.
Performing project management risk assessment comes with numerous benefits. Performing risk assessment in project management allows you to reduce your project’s exposure to risks. It can help you come up with smart and clear decisions on crucial issues in each phase of the project. Proper risk assessment also makes risks clearer and easily identifiable. These benefits are key to effective project management.
Above all, project risk management risk assessment makes sure everyone is safe inside the workplace. A thorough risk assessment may help prevent or at least reduce injuries, accidents, and illnesses throughout the project. Risk assessment is vital for deciding on what control measures to put in place. This is a contributing factor to reduced employee absenteeism, compensation claims, and reactive measures.
Showing that your risk assessment process is well-planned will show your employees that their health and safety are important to you. It is an effective way to gain employee loyalty.
Not only is project risk assessment good for the project. It is also beneficial to your organization as a whole because accidents in the workplace can be costly. Without a proper risk assessment, your business could incur financial losses resulting from fines and civil actions. Financial loss can also be a result of long production lead time, damages to parts and equipment, time and resources for training new employees, and mitigating negative publicity.
Project management risk assessments can reduce the possibility of incidents happening. They could also show your employees and occupational safety and health agencies that you have taken all the necessary steps to protect your employees from harm.
The benefits of digital checklists for project risk assessments
The use of checklists for project risk analysis is a practical, cost-effective tool. Checklists make sense, especially for repetitive work processes. If you always do projects in a particular industry, you can incorporate your experience from previous projects into new ones for risk analysis checklists. Checklists are a powerful tool against risks and for more quality.
In the traditional sense, checklists are paper, but they don’t have to be. Switching to a digital solution like Lumiform pays off in project management. Digital checklists are easy to edit, update, and share with a large group of people. Plus, you don’t have to carry around folders or binders anymore. All project risk analysis checklists and their results can be accessed anytime, anywhere via smartphone or tablet.
Use these benefits of digital checklists for your project risk assessment:
- Get started digitally right away by downloading a project risk assessment checklist from Lumiform’s template library.
- Configure the template in seconds thanks to the innovative form builder or create your first checklist from scratch.
- Add photos and annotations to your project risk assessment immediately, if necessary.
- Send a report with the findings to the team and stakeholders immediately – all automatically generated.
- Analyze the results from your project risk assessment in the desktop software and compare the results of successive project risk assessments.