This week for NETRIO’s Whiteboard Wednesday episode, Brian and Mike are discussing Risk Analysis as it relates to project management. When a new project presents itself, one of the first questions the team should be asking is, “What could go wrong?”. While this may seem negative, it is actually taking a proactive approach to Risk Analysis making it one of the most important things you can do for the success of the overall project.
Mike CromwellWelcome back to whiteboard Wednesday, Mike Cromwell.
Brian DeVaultBrian DeVault
Mike Cromwelland we're here today talking about the next in a series that we've been doing, talking about project management. Obviously project management is critical to any successful technology project implementation, but more so, especially when it gets complex; multiple locations, complex technology, multiples of technologies.
Mike CromwellAnd Brian, your team's been kicking ass on this front so, walking through the tenets, and today we're on number six, which is risk management, an area where I've seen companies of the past get completely off the rails on a project because they didn't assess the risks early on or mitigate them throughout the process. So talk - walk us through how your team, you and your team approached this.
Brian DeVaultAnd we could talk in depth about risk management. There's a lot of different ways and a lot that goes into risk management. We'll kind of keep it high level and talk about task related risks.
Brian DeVaultSo really, when we're managing a smaller project where, you know, we've got small groups of tasks and smaller groups of people. You know, this becomes related to each task, so there's there's tasks that each task has a dependency. So in a lot of times you have to perform them in order. And if you if you have a task that is falling behind schedule, then that introduces risk for the tasks that are subsequent, right? And so that's where you have to to kind of measure the risk and then add, remove or adjust resourcing.
Brian DeVaultWe talked about resource leveling in episode four. So this is where we would would introduce some of that logic. But obviously, sometimes you have to adjust your timeline also when risk is introduced, just so you're meeting expectations of all the stakeholders and that you can finish on time.
Brian DeVaultAnd then also you've got your your budget can be in jeopardy. And so by applying resource leveling, by applying communication, by applying some of our previously discussed tenets of project management, you inherently can can reduce the risk associated with not completing on time or not completing on budget or not meeting expectations.
Mike CromwellYour team's been knocking the cover off the ball on some very large projects here of late. If you think back over the last year, would you say are the top two or three risks that you see that are coming across different businesses that you capture through these plans?
Brian DeVaultYou know, it's typically related to an unrealistic timeline, an unrealistic budget, lack of preparation, lack of documentation, lack of formal process, not getting resources of proper resources assigned up front. Those can all be examples of things that will will ultimately cause the project to fail or operate in a high risk category.
Mike CromwellYour goal is to identify them early and head them off of the pass before they become a project jeopordy?
Brian DeVaultThat's right. It's block and tackle before you sink or swim
Mike CromwellBlock and tackle before you sink or swim. Keep that in mind, folks, that's a good tip. Never heard that before. So learn something new every time I do this. Hopefully you guys are, too.
Mike CromwellThanks for tuning in. Stay tuned for next week's whiteboard Wednesday when we talk about a really critical component, which is when you see a risk. Communication, right?
Brian DeVaultThat's right.
Mike CromwellSo stay tuned for more. Thanks for tuning in, folks.
What is Risk Management?
According to projectmanager.com, “Project risk management is the process of identifying, analyzing and responding to any risk that arises over the life cycle of a project to help the project remain on track and meet its goal. Risk management isn’t reactive only; it should be part of the planning process to figure out risk that might happen in the project and how to control that risk if it in fact occurs.”
Task Related Risk Management
In each project there are tasks. Each of these tasks will have a dependency. In most cases, these tasks will be performed in order. Consequently, if there is a task that is falling behind schedule, then that introduces risk for the tasks that are subsequent. This is where you have to measure the risk and then decide to add, remove or adjust resourcing. Resourcing leveling was discussed in episode four of our Whiteboard Wednesday series. After analyzing the risk, it is a good idea to utilize resource leveling to stay on track.
By applying resource leveling, communication, and some of our previously discussed tenets of project management, you inherently can reduce the risk associated with not completing on time, on budget or not meeting expectations.
Top Risks In Project Management
In NETRIO’s experience, risks usually relate to an unrealistic timeline, an unrealistic budget, lack of preparation, lack of documentation, lack of formal process, or not getting resources assigned at the beginning. These risks can all be examples of things that will ultimately cause the project to fail or operate in a high risk category.
The goal with any of these risks would be to identify them early and face them head on before they are able to put the project in jeopardy. In next week’s episode, we will talk about Communication which is a critical component to risk analysis.
This blog post is part of NETRIO’s weekly Whiteboard Wednesday series. Follow along on Linkedin and YouTube each week as Brian and Mike discuss use cases, new technology, and trends. The goal is to provide insights for enterprise customers and channel partners, trying to solve complex problems using technology.