Passing the #PMP Exam: Inputs and Outputs—Risk Management Area


 

1. Introduction

In this next series of posts on memorizing the processes, we move on to the final step 6, which is memorizing the INPUTS & OUTPUTS associated with each of the 42 processes. In order to breakdown the memorization into more bite-size chunks, I am going to break down this topic into at least 9 posts, one for each knowledge area. (There may be some knowledge areas that require more than one post.)

This post covers chapter 11 of the PMBOK® Guide, which covers the Risk Management Knowledge Area. This knowledge area contains 6 processes, five of which is in the Planning Process group, and the last of which is in the Monitoring & Controlling Process Group.

 

2. Review of processes in Risk Management Knowledge Area

As a review, here is a chart which gives a summary of the processes themselves, plus the tools & techniques used as part of that process.

Process
Number & Name
Process Description Tools & Techniques
11.1 Plan Risk Management Defining how to conduct risk management activities for a project.

 

1. Planning meetings and analysis
11.2 Identify Risks Determining which risks may affect the project objectives and documenting their characteristics. 1. Documentation reviews

2. Information gathering interviews.

3. Checklist analysis

4. Assumptions analysis

5. Diagramming techniques

6. SWOT analysis

7. Expert judgment

 

11.3 Perform Qualitative Risk Analysis Prioritizing risks for further analysis by assessing likelihood & impact. 1. Risk probability and impact assessment

2. Probability and impact matrix

3. Risk data quality assessment

4. Risk categorization

5. Risk urgency assessment

6. Expert judgment

 

11.4 Perform Quantitative Risk Analysis Numerically analyzing the effect of risks on project objectives. 1. Data gathering and representation techniques

2. Quantitative risk analysis and modeling techniques

3. Expert judgment

 

11.5 Plan Risk Responses Developing options and actions to enhance opportunities and reduce risk. 1. Strategies for negative risks or threats

2. Strategies for positive risks or opportunities

3. Contingent response strategies

4. Expert judgment

 

11.6 Monitor and Control Risks Tracking identified risks, implementing risk response plans if risks occur, and evaluating risk process effectiveness. 1. Risk reassessment

2. Risk audits

3. Variance and trend analysis

4. Technical performance measurement

5. Reserve analysis

6. Status meetings

3. Definition of inputs, outputs

The inputs for a given process are the documents or results of other processes that are used in order to do the process. The results of going through the process are the outputs. These outputs are then used as inputs for some other process.

4. Generic inputs

Before we start, there are two “generic” inputs that are used in many, many processes. The term “generic” inputs is not to be found in the PMBOK® guide; that’s just my term I made up in our study group to clue people in to the fact that they are included as an input in more processes than you could probably name off the top of your head.

A. ENVIRONMENTAL ENTERPRISE FACTORS (EEF)

This is the “company culture”, or factors that are external to the project but which influence the project’s success. These can include the company databases and, in particular, the project management software used by the company.

B. OPERATIONAL PROCESS ASSETS (OPA)

Written procedures, policies, and guidelines that are used by the company to guide all operations, including projects. Lessons learned would be an important part of OPA.

Think of the operational process assets as the “hard copy” (written procedures), and the environmental enterprise factors as the “soft copy” (software and the company culture or “unwritten rules” that govern how work is done).

NOTE: Tools & Techniques will be listed for the purpose of completeness and for reference, but their detailed description will be omitted, because it is contained in the blog posts specifically covering Tools & Techniques for that knowledge area.

11.1 PLAN RISK MANAGEMENT

To remember the inputs for this process, remember that the purpose of this process is to define how to conduct risk management activities for a project.

INPUTS

11.1.1 Project scope statement

The project scope statement is the output of the 5.2 Define Scope process.

11.1.2 Cost management plan

The cost management plan defines how risk budgets, contingencies, and management reserves will be reported and assessed.

11.1.3 Schedule management plan

The schedule management plan defines how schedule contingencies will be reported and assessed.

11.1.4 Communications management plan

The communications management plan defines how information on various risks will be shared.

11.1.5 Enterprise environmental factors

The attitudes and tolerances towards risk are part of a company culture.

11.1.6 Organizational process assets

Risk categories, standard templates for statements of risks

TOOLS & TECHNIQUES (for details, see Tools & Techniques Risk post)

11.1.1 Planning meetings and analysis

OUTPUTS

11.1.1 Risk management plan

This includes the following elements (RM stands for risk management in the following table):

Component Explanation (answers what question?)
1. Methodology How will RM be performed?
2. Roles and responsibilities Who will handle and lead RM activities?
3. Budgeting What funds are needed for RM?
4. Timing How often will RM be performed
5. Risk categories How are risks categorized according to their source (technical, external, organizational, or PM-related)?
6. Risk probability & impact definitions What does /low/moderate/high risk mean in terms of impacts on project?
7. Probability & impact matrix What are probabilities of risk occurring and what it its impact on project?
8. Stakeholders’ tolerances What are tolerances for risk among various stakeholders?
9. Reporting formats How are the results of RM processes to be communicated to stakeholders?
10. Tracking How will risk events be tracked for the purpose of the project and for inclusion in lessons learned for future projects?

11.2 IDENTIFY RISKS

To remember the inputs for this process, remember that the purpose of this process is to determine which risks may affect the project.

INPUTS

11.2.1 Risk management plan

This is the output for the process 11.1 Plan Risk Management.

11.2.2 Activity cost estimates

This is the output for the process 7.1 Estimate Costs.

11.2.3 Activity duration estimates

This is the output for the process 6.4 Estimate Activity Durations.

11.2.4 Scope baseline

This is the output for the process 5.3 Create WBS.

11.2.5 Stakeholder register

This is the output of the process 10.1 Identify Stakeholder.

11.2.6 Cost management plan

This is part of the project management plan, which is the output of the process 4.2 Project Management Plan.

11.2.7 Schedule management plan

This is part of the project management plan, which is the output of the process 4.2 Project Management Plan.

11.2.8 Quality management plan

This is part of the project management plan, which is the output of the process 4.2 Project Management Plan.

11.2.9 Project documents

Assumptions log, network diagrams, and other information valuable in identifying risks.

11.2.10 Enterprise environmental factors

Published information (industry studies, academic studies, etc.) useful for identifying risks.

11.2.11 Organizational process assets

Risk statement templates, and lessons learned from previous projects.

TOOLS & TECHNIQUES (see Tools & Techniques Risk post for details)

11.2.1 Documentation reviews

11.2.2 Information gathering techniques

11.2.3 Checklist analysis

11.2.4 Assumptions analysis

11.2.5 Diagramming techniques

11.2.6 SWOT analysis

11.2.7 Expert judgment

OUTPUTS

11.2.1 Risk register

The risk register identifies each risk, indicates what impact it would have on the project if the risk were to occur, and identifies potential responses to that risk.

11.3 PERFORM QUALITATIVE RISK ANALYSIS

To remember the inputs for this process, remember that the purpose of this process is to take the risks that have been identified in the previous process and to prioritize them by estimating their probability of occurrence and impact.

INPUTS

11.3.1 Risk register

This is the output from process 11.2 Identify Risks.

11.3.2 Risk management plan

This is the output from process 11.1 Plan Risk Management.

11.3.3 Project scope statement

This is the output from the process 5.2 Scope Statement.

11.3.4 Organizational process assets

Information about risks from previous projects.

TOOLS & TECHNIQUES (see Tools & Techniques Risk post for details)

11.3.1 Risk probability and impact assessment

11.3.2 Probability and impact matrix

11.3.3 Risk data quality assessment

11.3.4 Risk categorization

11.3.5 Risk urgency assessment

11.3.6 Expert judgment

OUTPUTS

11.3.1 Risk register updates

The risk register, which is an output of the 11.2 Identify Risk process, is updated with the following categories of information: risk categories, risk priority, risk causes, risk responses, watchlists (low-priority risks), and list of risks needing more analysis.

11.4 PERFORM QUANTITATIVE RISK ANALYSIS

To remember the inputs for this process, remember that the purpose of this process is to take the risk events that have been identified in the 11.2 Identify Risks process, and prioritized in the 11.3 Perform Qualitative Risk Analysis process, and to analyze what the effect of these will be on the project objectives.

INPUTS

11.4.1 Risk register

This is the output from the 11.2 Identify Risks process.

11.4.2 Risk management plan

This is the output from the 11.1 Plan Risk Management process.

11.4.3 Cost management plan

This is part of the project management plan, which is the output of the process 4.2 Project Management Plan.

11.4.4 Schedule management plan

This is part of the project management plan, which is the output of the process 4.2 Project Management Plan.

11.4.5 Organizational process assets

Information about risks from previous projects.

TOOLS & TECHNIQUES

11.4.1 Data gathering and representation techniques

11.4.2 Quantitative risk analysis and modeling techniques

11.4.3 Expert judgment

OUTPUTS

11.4.1 Risk register updates

The risk register is an output of the 11.2 Identify Risks process, and is updated as part of the 11.3 Perform Qualitative Risk Analysis process. It is further updated as part of this process by additional of the following categories of information: probabilistic analysis of the project, probability of achieving cost and time objectives, prioritized list of quantified risks, and trends in quantitative risk analysis results.

11.5 PLAN RISK RESPONSES

To remember the inputs for this process, remember that the purpose of this process is to enhance opportunities and reduce threats to project objectives.

INPUTS

11.5.1 Risk register

This is an output of the process 11.1 Identify Risks.

11.5.2 Risk management plan
This is an output of the process 11.2 Plan Risk Management.

TOOLS & TECHNIQUES

11.5.1 Strategies for negative risks or threats

11.5.2 Strategies for positive risks or opportunities

11.5.3 Contingent response strategies

11.5.4 Expert judgment

OUTPUTS

11.5.1 Risk register updates

To the risk register that is an output of the processes 11.2 Identify Risks, 11.3 Perform Qualitative Risk Analysis, and 11.4 Perform Quantitative Risk Analysis, the list of risks according to priority are updated with strategies for risk responses for when they occur.

11.5.2 Risk-related contract decisions

There are risks related to the fulfillment of contracts. Contracts are one form of mitigating or transferring risk.

11.5.3 Project management plan updates

Any of the components of the project management plan may be updated as a result of the development of risk responses.

11.5.4 Project document updates

Assumptions logs.

11.6 MONITOR AND CONTROL RISKS

To remember the inputs for this process, remember that the purpose of this process is the process of implementing risk responses plans, monitoring risks, identifying new risks, and evaluating the effectiveness of the overall risk management process.

INPUTS

11.6.1 Risk register

This is the output of the previous four processes 11.2 through 11.6 (updated throughout each process).

11.6.2 Project management plan

This is the output of the 4.2 Develop Project Management Plan.

11.6.3 Work performance information

This is the output of the process 4.3 Direct and Manage Project Execution

11.6.4 Performance reports

This is the output of the process 10.5 Report Performance.

TOOLS & TECHNIQUES

11.6.1 Risk reassessment

11.6.2 Risk audits

11.6.3 Variance and trend analysis

11.6.4 Technical performance measurement

11.6.5 Reserve analysis

11.6.6 Status meetings

OUTPUTS

11.6.1 Risk register updates

To the risk register that is an output of the previous 4 processes, details of risk audits, periodic risk reviews, and risk reassessments are added.

11.6.2 Organizational process assets updates

Lessons learned for future projects.

11.6.3 Change requests

If risks occur which require contingency plans or workarounds as part of a risk response, these may require a change request.

11.6.4 Project management plan updates

Risk management plans may need to be updated.

11.6.5 Project document updates

Assumptions logs updates may need to be updated for the purpose of future projects.

The next post will cover the inputs and outputs of the Procurements Knowledge Area.

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2 Responses

  1. Thanks for the definition of inputs, outputs, it really help me today.

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