Department of Health

Key messages

  • Risks include any unforeseen events that could affect progress.
  • Update the risk management plan throughout the project.

Risks to the project include any unforeseen event or activity that could impact progress in a negative (threats) or positive (opportunities) way.

Undertake a risk assessment and analysis to identify risks and inform risk mitigation strategies.

Risk management plan

The risk management plan is a working document that identifies:

  • potential risks to the project and the organisation
  • a risk rating for each risk
  • preventive measures (planned actions) if the risk occurs
  • who will be responsible for preventive measures
  • the timeframe for implementing preventive measures.

The risk management plan requires continuous monitoring and updating as new risks are identified, or as existing risks are re-assessed and risk responses adjusted.

Your organisation will have risk management processes that can guide you in developing and documenting a risk management plan.

See the download section on this page for an example of a risk management plan.


As part of the risk management plan, you should prepare people for change and encourage high staff engagement.

Measures to reduce the risk of low staff engagement may include:

  • Provide a clear picture. Ensuring stakeholders understand the drivers, aims and implementation will facilitate discussion and transparency.
  • Use the support of project champions to communicate the aims of the project to their colleagues.
  • Provide case studies that describe successful outcomes.
  • Build a sense of ownership. The VAWM uses a bottom-up approach to facilitate change. Involving AHPs and AHAs in the identification of AHA tasks will directly influence the outcomes of the project.
  • Identify influential stakeholders (not always the obvious people) and engage them to think in line with the VAWM. Invest extra time in building these relationships and persuading key people of the value of change.

Activity outputs

  • Risk management plan documented.
  • Risk management plan updated throughout project implementation.

Reviewed 05 October 2015


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