Sunday, November 15, 2009

1. Do you agree with the following statement: “With proper planning it is possible to eliminate most/all risks from a project?” Why or why not?

It is not possible to eliminate risk from a project regardless of planning. The role of risk management is to identify and analyze potential risks associated with a project. Once risks have been identified, preventative action or contingency plans may be established to reduce the impact of the risk on the success of the project. While this presents a way to help control the effects of risk, it does not eliminate risk from the project management equation. Nokes and Kelly (2008)

2. When in the project does risk assessment happen? What about risk mitigation and risk management?

Risk assessment is done when the project is first assigned. Assessing the risk associated with a project is simply identifying, analyzing and quantifying situations that can affect the project negatively and that may hinder the project team of delivery the project in time, within scope and budget. Once the risk has been assessed, risk mitigation and risk management will follow suit. Mitigation, according to the National Research Council Committee for Oversight and Assessment of U.S. Department of Energy Project Management (2005), is the action carried out to reduce the occurrence of the associated project risks identified during the risk assessment process or reduce the effect of the risks even if they occur. Risk management, according to Kerzner (2008) has to do with risk planning, risk assessment, risk mitigation and risk monitoring. Since risks occur during the life phases of the project, risk management is a never ending exercise. (Lock, 2007)

3. In evaluating projects across industries, it is sometimes possible to detect patterns in terms of the more common types of risks they routinely face. Consider the development of a new oil plant and compare it to a pharmaceutical plant. What likely forms of risk would your project team face in either of these circumstances?

Swarbrisk (2008) gave a general category of risk that could be idenstified in projects to include
• The market place and competitors
• The technology and its maturity
• The regulatory and government environment
• The project internal risks relating to funding, schedule and team components
• The suppliers of bulk, unique commodities and services
The principle of dealing with risks is the same whether a pharmaceutical or oil industry and it is summed up in the following four steps:
• Risk Identification
• Risk Categorisation
• Risk Mitigation
• Risk Management

1. NOKES, S and KELLY S. (2008). The definitive guide to project management: the fast track to getting the job done on time and on Budget.2nd ed. United Kingdom: Prentice Hall
2. LOCK, D. (2008). Project Management. 9th ed. England: Gower
3. National Research Council (U.S.) Committee for Oversight and Assessment of U.S. Department of Energy Project Management (2005). The owner's role in project risk management. Washington: National Academic Press
4. SWARBRICK, J. (2008). Encyclopedia of Pharmaceutical Technology. 3rd ed. New York: Informa HealthCare

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