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Friday, June 22, 2012

Overview of the Tools & Techniques used in Risk Identification

In the previous chapter, we took a very detailed look at all the inputs that we are going to use in the Identify risks process. Now we have all the information we need to proceed further. Logically speaking the next step would be to do something with all the information we gathered in the previous step in order to identify the risks that may affect us. Isn’t it?

The technical term for this “Do Something” is “Use some Tools and Apply some Techniques” on those inputs. There are a total of 7 Tools & Techniques that we will be using in order to identify the list of all potential risks in our project by using the inputs we collected in the previous chapter. They are:

1. Documentation Review
2. Information Gathering Techniques
3. Checklist Analysis
4. Assumptions Analysis
5. Diagramming Techniques
6. SWOT Analysis and
7. Expert Judgment

Expert Judgment is one tool or technique that I can’t possibly explain here because it depends on the expert judgment of the person doing the risk identification. So, I will only be covering all the remaining techniques.

Some of these tools & techniques have sub-items as well.

Information Gathering includes:

a. Brainstorming
b. Delphi Technique
c. Interviewing and
d. Root Cause Analysis

Diagramming Techniques include:

a. Cause & Effect Diagrams
b. System/Process flowcharts
c. Influence Diagrams
d. Etc.

To remind us all of the goal or purpose of this whole exercise, the output of this “Application of Tools & Techniques” on the “Inputs” identified in the previous chapter is to “Create the Risk Register” which will be the master list of all possible risks that can affect our project. This register will be updated in all the subsequent process of risk management. Remember the Risk Register Update Cycle?

Identifying all potential risks is not an easy process and requires a lot of time and dedicated effort along with sound understanding of risk management processes. If I start explaining all these tools & techniques in this chapter, it will be too lengthy. So, let us take a look at each of these tools one by one in the subsequent chapters.

Prev: Inputs used in Risk Identification

Next: Documentation Reviews

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