Risk Mitigation in project management starts with the planning phase, which is more important than anything else, according to most experts in this field. It involves finding solutions to the problems faced by project managers worldwide by identifying the threats and weaknesses associated with various projects. It aims to create action plans to reduce and mitigate the risks involved and enhance opportunities using various models. As long as we are optimally using our human and non-human resources and striving to eliminate risks and, as such, the allied damages, we are closer to attain sustainability that will have a long-term benefit to generations to come.
A project is a combination of human and non-human resources put together as a temporary organization in nature, having a start and end date and is unique such that it produces a result that is different from the others in delivering value and creating some utility that addresses the common welfare of the society. As a process, it involves human and technical resources in hand with capital resources to optimize cost, schedule, and quality elements. It is a unique process involving controlled and coordinated activities involving complex, non-routine, and one-time efforts to complete a particular task.
After the advent of globalization in the industrial paradigm, industries have come across an enormous influx of knowledge regarding various project management methodologies being employed by foreign industries to improve efficiency and dynamic methods to reach high growth levels. We need to implement such practices in our industrial setup to match our global counterparts. Project management helps to coordinate resources to achieve desirable results. Much awareness is needed in this field of study to enable us to take advantage of modern literature and practices, save costs, and be more efficient and effective. Whether the project will be managed reactively or proactively will lead to project success in general and sustainable development in particular.
Any project’s economic and financial viability is the most important thing that is most helpful in decision-making and policy. But we need to be ethically, socially as well as environmentally responsible. Keeping in mind all aspects, we have to exploit our resources optimally and have a sustainable development plan.
As defined by the Brundtland Commission’s Report, sustainable development is “the development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs” (United Nations, 1987). John Elkington also developed the Triple Bottom Line concept and propounded that business goals were not separable from the society and environment within which businesses operate (Elkington, 1997). Most companies adopted sustainability in their mission statement and strategy in the latter half of the ’90s. More focus was put on being responsible for the planet and its resources.
Projects can greatly contribute to the sustainable development of organizations. It is important to work hard, so those sustainability concepts are reflected in projects and project management. And some aspects of sustainability are easily found in the various standards of project management. Still, it has to be concluded that the integration of sustainability in projects and project management is not fully recognized yet.
But the need of the hour is to integrate project management and sustainable development. The relationship between project management and sustainable development is gaining interest from practitioners and academics throughout the world.
THE RISK MITIGATION PROCESS
The Risk Mitigation process, in brief, keeps track of risks that have been identified as well as strives to identify new risks and evaluating risk impact, and assessing risk mitigation process’s effectiveness, and also being persistent in all these actions throughout the project life cycle. Risk Management is 1 of 10 Knowledge Areas in the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK®):
- RISK IDENTIFICATION
- RISK IMPACT AND THE CONSEQUENCE ASSESSMENT
- RISK PRIORITIZATION ANALYSIS
- RISK MITIGATION PLAN DEVELOPMENT
The combined value of probability and the allied consequence helps determine the level of strength of certain risks and, as such, helps determine a certain course of action required to contain the risk involved.
Methodologies contain guiding processes for those who are involved in project management. The true definition is that methodologies are not tool specific; however, in today’s software-reliant world, the reality is that the methodology and the organization’s project management software tool are often heavily intertwined. They provide a systematic approach to ensure success. Project Management is a tough job to execute as it involves a systematic and an ordered approach to make big things happen. Thus the use of collective intellect of experienced people of the particular field concerned is required. And the task of integrating project management and sustainability is quite hard but important.