Workaround

I have mentioned workarounds in many posts and comments. For many PMP aspirants, this was a new concept. A few of them requested that I write a post explaining it. 

Today, we will be going into detail about:

  • What is a workaround?
  • What plan do we use for workarounds?
  • Which reserve will you use for workarounds?
  • In which process do you manage workarounds?

Workaround

Workarounds are responses to unidentified risks or passively accepted risks.

Put simply, if any unidentified risk occurs, you will manage it through a workaround. If you have any identified risks you did not plan for, you will also use a workaround to manage them. 

The project environment is dynamic, and even an experienced project manager cannot identify all risks. Workarounds are common.

Which Plan Will You Use to Manage a Workaround?

You may wonder which plan to use for workarounds; more specifically, do you use a contingency or fallback plan?

Contingency plans and fallback plans are developed to manage identified risks, but workarounds are a response to unidentified risks. 

Once an unidentified risk occurs, you will discuss it with your team members and come up with a plan to contain the situation and minimize the impact.

Which reserve will you use for workarounds?

You have two risk reserves in project management: contingency reserve and management reserve

The contingency reserve is for identified risks, and the management reserves are for unidentified risks. Since workarounds are a response to unidentified risks, you will use them.

In which process do you carry out a workaround?

As discussed, workarounds are responses to unidentified risks and involve controlling them. So, you carry out workarounds in the control risks process. Implementing workarounds can cause a change request.

Summary

Workarounds are responses to unidentified risks. Once any unidentified risk occurs, you will develop a plan and try to manage it. There is no pre-existing plan for workarounds, and you use the management reserve. 

How do you manage workarounds in your project? Please share your experiences in the comments section.