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Published 02/11/2024


The success of a project or a business depends on the ability of the business to identify and score any risks that could impact the project. Risks in workplaces are unavoidable, but they can be controlled. Having a risk register software helps keep track of possible risks that may occur and harm workers.

Also, fulfilling compliance standards is hard when done manually. Implementing software to keep the company on top of potential risks that can derail its operations is critical. All this is achievable by having a risk register software in place.

A risk register is a tool that most project managers, supervisors, WHS officers and business owners use to identify and monitor any risks that will impact current and future projects and tasks. Having a risk register is a major aspect regarding business practices and the management of projects as it is how businesses proactively minimise potential risks and setbacks.

The overall purpose of a risk register is to identify, record and track potential and current risks. Some of these risks tracked can be defined as anything unexpected that could negatively affect business projects and tasks. Once a task is identified, it will be assessed by your team and recorded within the risk register.


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What is risk register software?

It is a digital tool used in risk management to identify potential setbacks within the company or a project and fulfilling compliance standards. A risk register software identifies, analyzes, and manages potential hazards within the business or project.

A risk register software can be implemented at any stage of a project. The risk register contains all information about the identified risks. The information includes; the nature of the risk, level of impact, mitigation measures, the priority of the risk, and the likelihood of the risk.

A risk register is a tool used to identify and manage risks in the workplace. It is used by employers, managers and health and safety professionals to assess potential hazards, identify the likelihood of a risk occurring, and plan for how to respond if the risk does occur. The risk register can help employers and managers identify and prioritize risks, create a plan of action to address them, and track progress over time. It can also help to ensure that all employees are aware of potential risks and how to respond to them.

How to set up a risk register for 2024

Having a risk register in place that is in a digital format for your organization allows you to implement and streamline workflows right off a registered risk. Some common areas include:

1. Identify risks
The primary reason for implementing a risk register software is to identify potential business and project risks. If you want success on your side, then you should be prepared! The business or project's success relies on the preparedness to set up a risk register software.

2. Analyze the risks
Risks are never the same, so ranking them helps examine the probability of occurrence and the approximate cost. The best way to perform risk analysis is using the score-based system of 1 to 10.

As the project manager, you can estimate the probability of a risk happening by revisiting past projects, brainstorming ideas with team members, or evaluating case studies of similar projects.

3. Creating solutions to the risks

Setting up the risk register will create a platform for brainstorming ideas to mitigate the potential solutions to the identified risks. Some of the potential solutions include; sharing the risk with a third party such as an insurer, controlling the risk yourself, avoiding the risk by dropping risky plans, and accepting the risks when they happen.

4. Assign responsibility to each risk

All risk mitigation measures require a party to carry out the prevention measures. Risks cannot be assigned to everyone, so the personnel should be vetted. The risk register provides detailed instructions for handling challenging situations when the risk personnel face them.

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Why do you need it?

Your business needs to implement a risk register due to the various projects and tasks your workers will undertake. Also, as these projects become larger and more workers and contractors are employed, it will become increasingly difficult for you to keep track of all potential risks.

Some examples are security and data risks, legal risks, catastrophic events, and disruptions to the supply chain. If these potential risks are not tracked in a register and accessed regularly, there may be a chance that some may be missed or forgotten about.

What should you include?

Risk registers will always vary due to the size of a company or organisation and the project or business practice. However, most risk registers generally share the following steps.

- The name of the manager, supervisor or worker who is lodging the risk.

- A description of the risk - can be as brief or as detailed as necessary.

- Breakdown structure - a chart that allows the identification of project risks and their categories.

- Categorization - there can be many categories that need to be filled out for the risk. E.g., project, site, and budget.

- An analysis to determine the impact and probability of the risk.

- Prioritisation - can be determined by assigning a score to each risk depending on their impact.

- Response - each risk needs a response to diminish its effect on the project or task.

Components of a Risk Register

- Risk identification number
Risk identification numbers organize the risk into a specific category that help companies keep track of different entries. The identification number is a numerical value or alphanumeric code assigned to a risk depending on the size of the project or business structure. It helps stakeholders identify the risk quickly.

- Date
The entry date is recorded at the top of the risk form to help readers understand the timeline of the risk in the future.

- Description
The nature of the risk is described to help readers understand how the risk occurred and the possible causes. The potential impact and solutions to the risk are also described.

- The intensity of the risk
The intensity is measured by the likelihood of happening and the potential impacts. A higher intensity score means a high likelihood and impact of the risk and vice versa.

- Owner of the risk
The owner of the risk is the person delegated to handle the risk plan and lead the response team. Details of the risk owner are also included in the register for clarification if needed.

- Risk status
When all risk details are written, and the plan prepared, the risk status is marked. It can either be open, pending, in progress, or waiting.

Digital risk registers save the company office space, and the documents are stored in the cloud, thus increasing transparency. All stakeholders can access them when needed, and risk assessment becomes an easy and quick process. Implementing a risk register helps in increasing the efficiency and effectiveness of executing projects.

Examples when a Risk Assessment might be done in the workplace

Here are some common examples of when a risk assessment might be done in a workplace or organisation and the risk registry would be your registry for these risks.

- When introducing new technology or equipment
- When implementing a new safety policy
- Prior to any changes in the way a job is performed
- When implementing a new working environment
- Before any changes to the physical layout of the workplace
- Prior to any changes in the way a business is operated
- When planning any new projects
- When introducing new chemicals or materials into the workplace
- When introducing new work processes or procedures
- Prior to any changes in the way a team or department operates

Example Risk Registries

For some common risk registry examples:

- Project Risk Registry: a registry for detailing the potential risks and issues that may arise during a project lifecycle, as well as their possible impacts, likelihood, and mitigation strategies.

- Corporate Risk Registry: showing the risks that may affect business operations, finances, reputation, and long-term strategies.

- Clinical Risk Registry: a healthcare example that includes potential hazards and risks to patient safety.

- IT Risk Registry: commonly security breaches, system failures, or data loss.

- Environmental Risk Registry: tracking risks related to environmental hazards such as pollution, climate change or natural disasters.

- Financial Risk Registry: financial risks such as economic downturns, market volatility or non-compliance with financial regulations.

- Regulatory Risk Registry: local, national, and international regulations and laws.

- Operational Risk Registry: includes operational risks such as process inefficiencies, system failures, or supply chain disruption.

- Reputation Risk Registry: tracking risks that can negatively impact the reputation of the organization.

- Strategic Risk Registry: risks that could impact the achievement of strategic objectives of the organization.

View Risk Register Templates, Forms and Examples

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