PMP: Risk Management in Agile

PMP: Risk Management in Agile

When we manage a project, it is unavoidable that we have to actively deal with risks. There are numerous factors that play an important role in project success or failure.

Project Management February 4, 2021

Introduction to Project Risk Management:

Project management is all about diligently managing each element of project including Scope, Schedule, Risk, Quality, Resources and other subsidiary elements. When we think about Risk, it might be pertaining to any element of the project which might result in sinking the project to any extent.

Project Planning is the early phase of project life cycle. All the elements need to be planned early and need to revisit periodically to understand if there is any deviation from the original plan.

There are numerous actions a project manager can take to realign the project in case of any issues. Risk management is a continuous process throughout the project since risks continue to emerge during the lifetime of a project.

Traditional Risk management involves below activities:

  • Identifying and Managing risks 
  • Project risk management addresses both Individual project risks (affecting one or more project objectives) as well as overall project risks (affecting project as a whole) 
  • Contingency reserves for known risks such as schedule or budget risks 
  • Management reserves for Unknown Risks or Emergent Risks 
  • Project resilience: By improving on all areas of a project such as right contingency planning, flexible project processes, empowered project team, clear input from stakeholders etc. 
  • Integrated risk management: A coordinated approach to enterprise-wide risk management 
  • In traditional model, Risks are primary identified and documented at the beginning of the project 
  • In traditional model, Risks are also managed as and when they surface through the project but frequent reviews are not carried out to identify risks at regular internals.

Agile Approach in Risk Management:

  • Frequent reviews of incremental work products - In Agile, we need to perform frequent reviews of work products and take necessary actions. Frequent reviews help in surfacing risks early and cost less
  • Cross-functional project teams accelerate knowledge sharing - Interactions within and outside team boosts project communications which helps to identify risks which could otherwise might get missed due to poor communication
  • Risks are identified, analyzed and managed during each iteration - In each iteration, project team carries out risk management which makes it continuous process enabling continuous improvement
  • Risks cost less/none as they are captured early due to frequent reviews - Frequent reviews enable better project management and increases chances of project success, yet staying within the constraints of project such as scope, schedule, cost, resources etc


Author: Anita Myana

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