Risk Ratings Explained

Risk Ratings Explained

Our research has identified a number of factors, which when present, elevate the risk of a project going wrong.

Not all factors have the same effect with some increasing the threat to a project more than others. The co-occurrence of certain factors and the combinations of such also play a role in determining the extent to which risk is elevated for a project.

We have used the term "project failure" throughout this website as a reference to when things go substantially wrong, including substantial deviation from planned / expected cost, quality, timeframe, features etc. rather than just the narrower definition of total project non-delivery.

The risk ratings used by our assessment model are detailed below along with a short description as to the increased likelihood of project failure (as we have defined it above).


VERY RISKY There are factors at play which can be reasonably expected to substantially increase the likelihood of project failure.

Engage external specialist help to fully assess and manage all project risks, implement the recommendations coming out of our risk assessment and seek additional specialist help for all areas in which your own capabilities are lacking.
HIGH RISK There are factors at play which can be reasonably expected to significantly increase the likelihood of project failure.

Consider engaging external specialist help to fully assess and manage all project risks, thoroughly review your working practices to ensure you are following standard industry practices, seriously consider implementing the recommendations coming out of our risk assessment (where relevant) and seek specialist help for areas in which your own capabilities are lacking.
MEDIUM RISK There are either multiple factors which each have a minor influence but combine together to increase the likelihood of project failure, and/or one or more factors which individually may have a much greater influence on the likelihood of project failure.

Thoroughly review your working practices to ensure you are following standard industry practices, take heed of the recommendations coming out of our risk assessment and seek specialist help for areas in which your own capabilities are lacking.
LOW RISK There are some factors which may have a minor influence on the likelihood of project failure - follow standard industry practices to reduce the impact of these.
SMOOTH SAILING You have not identified any factors which would increase the likelihood of project failure - continue on as you are.