Risk management in the agile world
Does your business or development team manage risk?
Risk management is a process that a team puts into place to reduce risks on a project. All projects big and small will have a certain amount of risk applied.
In the software world, risk can increase as software grows more and more complex. For example, when a new piece of functionality is added to an existing software product, then risk can increase.
What is risk?
According to the Project Management Institute, a risk is “an uncertain event of condition that if it occurs has a positive or negative effect on one of more project objectives such as scope, schedule, cost or quality.”
“an uncertain event of condition that if it occurs has a positive or negative effect on one of more project objectives such as scope, schedule, cost or quality.”
More consideration needs to be given to risk management in agile projects. Having a proper plan in place when starting projects can expedite resolution and help make your project a success.
You need a plan in place to mitigate risk and have contingencies in place if something goes wrong.
How to use a risk register
A risk register should be set up to deal with risks at the planning stages of new agile projects.
The agile team should brainstorm the risks early in the project as a group to identify, quantify and mitigate against potential risks for the project and add the risks to a risk register.
The issues that arose from the previous agile sprints and the lessons learned from them should also feed into this risk register.
What should go into this risk register?
Typically this register includes:
- Risk Description: this details in a short sentence the risk description.
- Contingency: this outlines what should be done in case the risk actually occurs including who to contact
- Mitigation: this details what to do in order to stop this risk from occurring in the first place.
- Probability: this is a quantitative method to measure risk exposure. It is an important way of prioritising the risk and make sure that this risk does not happen. If the risk does come to pass then we need to extinguish this risk as fast as possible because it will have a huge impact on the developers and /or testers in the group.
A risk matrix can be used to emphasize probability impact in the risk register.
The risk register will help other sprint teams working on similar software features, and it definitely helps with overall quality assurance.
Please let me know if you have any questions about this blog post by tweeting @SageCRMSolution.