Basics of Software Risk Management
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by Arindam Ghosh
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Risk Management Tools and Techniques


The goal of brainstorming is to obtain a comprehensive list of project risks. Risks are then identified and categorized by type of risk and their definitions are sharpened.

Delphi Technique

A facilitator uses a technique to solicit ideas about the important project risks. The responses are summarized and then re-circulated to the experts for further comment.


Interviewing experienced project participants, stakeholders, and subject matter experts can identify risks.

Root Cause Identification

This is an enquiry to the essential causes of a project’s risks. Effective risk responses can be developed if the root cause of the risk is addressed.

SWOT Analysis (Strength, Weakness, Opportunities and Threats Analysis)

This technique ensures examination of the project from each of the SWOT perspectives to increase the breadth of considered risks.

Checklist Analysis

Risk Identification checklists can be developed based on historical information and knowledge that has been accumulated from previous similar projects and from other sources of information.

Assumption Analysis

Assumption analysis is a tool that explores the validity of assumptions as they apply to the project. It identifies risks to the project from inaccuracy, inconsistency or incompleteness assumptions.

Diagrammatic Techniques used are the following.

System or Process Flow charts shows how various elements of a system interrelate and the mechanism of causation.

Influence Diagrams are graphical representations of situations showing casual influences, time ordering of events and other relationships among variables and outcomes.

Cause and Effect Diagrams also known as Ishikawa or fishbone diagrams are useful for identifying causes of risks.

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