When it comes to the tools that a project manager can utilise in order to make their role a little easier there are quite a few, and if you have done plenty of project management training then you will probably have touched on a fair number of them. When it comes to risk identification, some of the more common techniques include historical data, Root Cause analysis and Monte Carlo analysis. However, it is worth taking a look at SWOT analysis, a technique that is mainly used for developing strategies.
What is SWOT analysis?
Sometimes referred to as the SWOT matrix, SWOT analysis is just one of the techniques that organisations and project managers have included in their practises for risk management. SWOT refers to Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats. SWOT is a framework under which teams and organisations can take a good look at any influences, both internal and external, that might influence their project, institution or product. This might be a negative affect or a positive one.
SWOT techniques can be used to identify, forecast, resolve and guard against and unforeseen and pending seen risks in order to assist with better completion of a project and a better success rate.
How can you use SWOT?
In order to successfully complete a SWOT analysis, it is very important that you are able to follow an appropriate structure in order to achieve the best results.
You should begin by determining the objective. To do this you should select a key strategy or project that you need to analyse it and put it at the top of your page. The you can create a grid using a large square that is divided into four small equally sized squares. Each one should be labelled with the words that make up SWOT – there are several SWOT templates that are available online that you could use for this.
Next you will need to start filling in the boxes. You should add the strengths and weaknesses, and these should include any factors that might affect the project. The elements that you need to add to your diagram may be both anecdotal and qualitative as well as quantitative in nature. Using a bullet point list can make it easier and clearer to read. Once you have added all of the necessary information than you can begin to formulate your conclusions. Analyse your diagram and not whether the positive outcomes are greater than the negative ones. If they do, then it is safe to assume that it is a good decision to follow up on that objective. If the positive outcomes are less that the negative ones, then there is a good chance that you will need to make the necessary adjustments. If this is simply not possible then you may need to consider the very real alternative that you might need to abandon the project before it really gets underway.
If you are not yet using SWOT but feel that it would be beneficial to your project management then you may find that project management courses can help you to get a better understanding of just how much it can help you.