Categorized | Risk Management

5 Tips For Improving Your Risk and Opportunity Logs

Aside from the project plan, there are several documents needed to be created when a project starts such as a goal log, issues log, risk log and opportunity log. The difference between a log and other documents needed in the course of the project is that logs are updated during the course of the project. This means that they need to be systematically done, easy to use and maintain, as well as accessible to the members of the project.

The Risk Log

Project planning requires proper risk management, for which having a risk log is fundamental. Risk management deals with uncertainties that may throw your project out of schedule. This means analyzing possibilities of these uncertainties in advance, plotting ways to avoid it, and if the uncertainty happens, it then becomes an issue that must be dealt with. The risk log gives you a thorough overview of these potentials as well as other details that will allow you to manage them if (or when) they become issues.

The Opportunity Log

The opportunity log is much similar to a risk log, except that these projected events are beneficial, with favorable consequences, rather than counterproductive to the project. Opportunity logs lists these events as well as the benefits that can be attained should these opportunities arise. What is more important in this case is that the opportunities should be recognized and acted upon.

Risk and opportunity logs are very valuable to ensure that a project is completed on time within budget and according to specifications. They allow a project management team to keep abreast (or even way head) of any changes that may impact the project, whether positively or negatively.

Five Simple Ways To Improve Your Risk And Opportunity Logs

1. Involve the team in the initial assessment. One of the causes of insufficient project planning and risk management is the lack of understanding of the project head of the different tasks and aspects of the project. Having all the different task teams represented at this stage will help solve that as they can help identify risks in areas the project manager is not familiar with.
2. Always be clear in identifying the source and originator of the risks and opportunities. Ask them to expound and clarify these risks and opportunities, and note them down in the logs. This will make it possible to address them when they become issues by making it easier to identify the key person/s involved.
3. Make sure risk and opportunities, descriptions and likely consequences are complete and well-fleshed out. Ask “so what” with every risk and opportunity identified to make sure the consequences are clear. This way, solutions and ways forward are also completely discussed.
4. Use Your Tools. Risk and opportunity logs are easily done through any spreadsheet software, or any of the specialized project management software available these days. Use online groups or your company’s intranet to give access to the people involved– this can be the members of the project team or the stakeholders in order to keep it up-to-date as much as possible, and make it easy to alert the people involved.
5. Inspect and Update the Logs regularly. Ideally, risk and opportunities logs should be inspected daily in order to check if any of the early signs or warnings or “trigger” events indicated in the risk and opportunity logs appear.

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