Friday, March 27, 2009

The Benefits of a Risk Database

William Pollard, a businessman and author, once said, "Information is a source of learning. But unless it's organized, processed, and available to the right people in a format for decision making, it is a burden, not a benefit."

A risk database is a repository that can organize, process, and format the information that is collected and used in the risk management processes. The use of a risk database throughout a project's life cycle will make documented information easily accessible for important decision-making purposes.

Project risk information that you may need to store in a database could include agreements, current priorities, specifications, project plan changes, instructions, results, and other information depending on the nature of the project.

You must enter information into the database on a regular basis so that this information is up to date.

You can use a risk database not only for storing and retrieving data, but also for analysis. A database can sort information into categories and generate reports based on what you need to know.

The database can perform complicated calculations in seconds, which provides information that may help decision makers avoid mistakes. You can analyze project information for risks and alert team members about any emerging risks.

Over time, your company will gain experience in keeping track of project risks in a risk database. This documentation can be compiled for a single project or across similar projects, and be used as lessons learned for future projects. Prior to planning new projects, team members can search through the lessons learned to avoid making similar mistakes.

You can use a risk database to help you avoid mistakes and plan effectively for future projects. A risk database can organize and format information so that it is a learning source to help you make important project decisions.

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