We have compiled the top 20 risk manager interview questions that might be asked in an interview to test various aspects of risk management skills, with tips and a sample answer for each. These risk management questions will help employers assess whether each candidate has the required knowledge and experience in risk management.
1. Briefly Explain the Roles of a Risk Manager?
Here, the interviewer wants to know if you are familiar with the duties of a risk manager.
Tip 1: Demonstrate a solid understanding of what risk managers do
Tip 2: Provide several roles performed by a risk manager
“Risk Managers identify and evaluate the risks that are likely to be faced by an organization. They come up with ways to control or mitigate risks and liabilities. A risk manager offers practical risk models involving credit, operational, and market risk, guaranteeing operation control.
Risk managers also evaluate existing risk handling measures to identify gaps. They develop risk management plans to assess, mitigate, and recover from risks effectively.”
2. How Do You Mitigate Risk?
Here, the interviewer wants to understand if you know how to prioritize risks.
Tip 1: Demonstrate that you understand risk mitigation
Tip 2: Describe how you can undertake risk mitigation
“The best strategy is prioritizing risk control and reducing those that can have a major effect on an organization. Risk mitigation involves planning for catastrophes and finding means to lessen the bad impacts. The risk mitigation factors are the needs of business employees. Moreover, mitigation of risks includes identifying potential risks in business, analyzing the effect of each risk, and ranking risks depending on their effect on business.”
3. How Can You Perform Risk Identification?
Here, the interviewer will try to ascertain if you are skilled in identifying risks.
Tip 1: Describe risk identification
Tip 2: Explain the processes involved in risk identification
“Risk identification is a preliminary step in risk management that involves communicating and documenting concerns. Risk identification begins with understanding business objectives. A risk manager must identify undesirable outcomes, unwanted events, emerging opportunities as well as emerging threats.
The following are steps I would undertake to identify risks: Understanding the core things that should be considered, gathering information, applying tools and techniques of risk identification, and documenting risks.”
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4. Briefly Explain The Process Of Risk Management
Here, the interviewer will try to assess the extent to which you understand the risk management process and framework.
Tip 1: State the steps involved in risk management
Tip 2: Give weight to your answer by briefly explaining each step
“Although different terms are used to describe the process of risk management, the main steps involved in the process are:
- Identifying risk – this is where potential risks that are likely to affect the business are uncovered and described.
- Analyzing risks – here, the risk manager examines each identified risk to understand the magnitude of their impact on organizational goals.
- Risk evaluation – this is where risks are ranked according to the negative effect on an organization.
- Deal with risks – the risk manager develops preventive plans, contingency plans, and risk mitigation strategies. You will respond depending on the risks that have great risk on the business.
- Risk monitoring – at this stage, tracking and reviewing risks is done.”
5. As A Risk Manager, How Can You Ensure Monitoring And Control Of Risks?
Here, the interviewer will assess whether you can keep track of risk responses against laid-out plans.
Tip 1: Briefly explain how risk managers can monitor and control risks
Tip 2: Provide several ways you can accomplish that
“Monitoring and controlling risks involves various processes including tracking identified risks, implementation of response plans, improvement of risk management processes, and responding effectively to new risks.
I can accomplish this in various ways, including using a risk management plan, risk register, performance reports, tracking residual risks, and ensuring that procedures and policies are adhered to.”
6. How Can You Communicate Risks Effectively To Stakeholders?
Risks should be communicated before the project begins and during implementation, and after completion. Here, the interviewer seeks to understand ways you would communicate to stakeholders.
Tip 1: State ways through which risks can be communicated.
Tip 2: Briefly explain each method for conveying risks
“I will use the following ways:
- Involve teams – I will identify all the teams involved in a project. Following this, I will identify individuals like team leaders or individuals skilled in enterprise risk management. Entrusting communication to experts will ensure that stakeholders will acquire more relevant information.
- Consider stakeholders’ location – stakeholders are not always located near the project. To communicate risks effectively, I will identify a member of the project team who resides close to stakeholders. This could be in terms of time zone, country, or region. These individuals can convey risk information and respond to any concerns or questions.
- Use technology – emails, text messages, calls, and other means of communication provided by available technology.”
7. Explain The Meaning Of Risk Breakdown Structure?
To answer this risk management interview question, you need to understand whether the interviewer is interested in knowing whether you are familiar with risk management tools.
Tip 1: Describe the meaning of a risk breakdown structure
Tip 2: Give power to your answer by mentioning all important points
“A risk breakdown structure or RBS represents risks hierarchically. An RBS begins with the risks at higher levels and goes down to the risks at the finest level. With different levels, it is easier to streamline risks. Besides, it makes it quicker to identify risks categorically with the focus being accorded to specific risk categories.”
8. What Are The Types Of Project Risks?
To plan effectively, you need to know the risks you can come across. Here, the interviewer seeks to determine if you are well aware of different project risks.
Tip 1: State different types of project risks that risk managers are likely to face
Tip 2: Briefly explain each type of risk
“The different kinds of risks include:
Stakeholder risk – this risk relates to managers, suppliers, investors, customers, and other stakeholders. The risk factor comes about when these people cannot implement a project wisely and correctly.
External risk – completing a project requires external help from people like vendors. But the involvement of external individuals brings about some risk in a project.
Technology risks – some projects require the use of the latest technology. Some organizations may not manage to acquire the latest technology, hence making that a risk factor.
Others include execution risk that arises because of the absence of organizational support and regulatory risk, which relate to skipping any of the strict project regulations.”
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9. What Is Risk Probability And Risk Impact?
Here, the interviewer is interested in assessing if you are well aware of risk analysis components.
Tip 1: Provide a description that defines the two terms
Tip 2: Demonstrate how probability and impact are applied in risk analysis
“A risk impact is an effect or consequence of a risk event on project objectives. Impacts can be beneficial or damaging to the objectives of a project. While the impact scale may vary, the five-point scale is commonly used to indicate the level of risk, ranging from very low to very high.
Risk probability refers to the possibility of having a risky event. This possibility can be represented quantitatively and qualitatively. Risk probability is expressed qualitatively using terms such as rare, possible, and frequent. Numerical expression utilizes frequencies, percentages, and scores.”
10. Who Performs A Risk Assessment?
Here, the interviewer wants to know if you are well-informed about risk assessment.
Tip 1: Provide a clear answer concerning who takes the responsibility of assessing risk
Tip 2: Familiarize yourself with risk assessment questions. Make sure not to leave any important point.
“The responsibility of carrying out a risk assessment is vested on a risk manager by an employer or institution. A risk manager has relevant skills, experience, and knowledge to lead risk assessment successfully. This involves systematic identification and evaluation of risks in a workplace. The risk manager works with heads of other departments to ensure that an organization-wide risk assessment is conducted successfully.
Besides, the risk manager should collaborate with project teams and use avenues such as a risk workshop to discuss and brainstorm about risk assessment. This will help to come up with a list of risks and undertake assessment for each of the teams.”
11. Describe The Daily Routine Of Risk Managers?
Here, the interviewer wants to know if you are well aware of what risk managers do every day.
Tip 1: State the activities that risk managers perform every day
Tip 2: Add weight to your answer by giving a brief description
“Risk managers maintain data or input quality of their risk management systems. They assess the potential environmental effects of new processes and products on long-term profitability and growth. Risk managers measure, monitor, and analyze different aspects of risks associated with a business. They also undertake statistical analysis to quantify risk using different tools including econometric models.”
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12. What Qualities Should Risk Managers Possess To Perform Their Roles Effectively?
Here, the interviewer tries to assess if you are conversant with the qualities of a good risk manager.
Tip 1: Provide a brief and precise answer
Tip 2: State several qualities possessed by a good risk manager
“Risk managers should be able to prioritize risks by ensuring increased visibility of the functions of risk management at every level. They should identify areas of a project that require more attention. A good risk manager should have excellent communication skills to convey information concerning business risks effectively.
Moreover, they should be influential and organizational savvy and be able to overcome resistance. They also need to be tech-savvy to understand the technological impacts to the organizations and the industry.”
13. How Is A Risk Workshop Conducted?
The interviewer wants to assess if you are familiar with conducting a risk workshop.
Tip 1: Describe how a risk workshop is conducted
Tip 2: Briefly explain each phase to give weight to your answer
“A risk workshop is one of the tools that risk managers use to enable people to understand risks, how risks can hamper business objectives, and how risks relate to an organization’s strategies. To effectively conduct a risk workshop, I would have five phases:
- Leader introduction – this involves winning the support of the leadership in using the workshop to assess and identify risks. The top management makes the workshop essential since employees will listen to them more than other managers.
- Leader risk discussions – this phase involves briefing the leaders about the workshop process and allowing them to offer their views.
- Education and survey – at this stage, employees are briefed about the workshop and expectations. Moreover, they complete a survey that seeks to collect their views concerning the status of risk management and associated issues in the organization.
- Workshop – the workshop takes place at this phase. It can take half a day or a longer period based on its scope and number of attendees. Various discussions are held to sensitize employees about various ways they can help to identify and manage risks.
- Final deliverable – at this stage, I would ensure the final report on resolutions made during the workshop is released without delay. This report is particularly crucial to the management since they will use it to review their business strategy. Besides, the report documents risks that need to be addressed.”
14. Who Is Usually Assigned The Role Of Risk Owner?
Here, the interviewer will try to find out if you are familiar with a risk owner.
Tip 1: Provide a brief description of a risk owner
Tip 2: Ensure to give all-important points
“The risk owner should be a person who is ultimately answerable for ensuring that risk is handled appropriately. In some cases, there may be more than one individual directly responsible for activities that aid in managing each identified risk. Such persons work together with the risk owner in managing the associated risk.”
15. What Great Accomplishment Have You Attained As A Risk Manager?
Here, the interviewer wants to assess whether you have made any achievements in risk management.
Tip 1: Provide an accomplishment that demonstrates that you possess qualities that are required
Tip 2: Describe the accomplishment with the most impact
“My greatest achievement was during my previous assignment when I was tasked with developing a risk management plan. Previously, the company used to have a recurrence of defects in production. Following that, I was hired as a risk manager to find a long-lasting solution to the problem. I helped the company to get ahead of risks by creating a plan to manage risks. I was implemental in helping the company identify the component that was causing defects, and in the end, all defects cleared after it was replaced.”
16. As A Risk Manager, How Can You Plan Appropriately For A Risk Mitigation Strategy?
Here, the interviewer will assess whether you can plan effectively for risk mitigation.
Tip 1: Describe an effective plan for risk mitigation
Tip 2: Briefly explain the steps involved in planning
“Planning for risk mitigation involves the following steps:
- Risk identification – this involves determining business risks and how they occur. An in-depth assessment of the possibility of each risk and its potential severity is done.
- Eliminate or minimize risks – this step follows risk identification, which involves reducing or doing away with the identified risks.
- Identify people who will accomplish different tasks – a risk mitigation plan should identify people who should act on different aspects of a disaster. This facilitates quick recovery from any disaster.
- Planning and determining disaster recovery contingencies – the size and type of a business and the damage caused determine contingency measures.
- Communicating the plan to individuals concerned – these include service providers, contractors, suppliers, and staff. They should be informed about the strategies to mitigate risks and recover from them.
Following this, a risk management plan is prepared.”
17. In What Ways Can You Enhance Our Risk Management Process?
Here, the interviewer seeks to know ways through which you can enhance risk management processes.
Tip 1: Provide two or three practical ways risk managers can enhance risk management
Tip 2: Give weight to your answer by explaining your points briefly
“I will improve risk management processes in several ways:
First, I will help to create an organizational culture that encourages employees to speak out about risks as well as be responsible and avoid blaming others after the occurrence of negative events.
Secondly, I will strive to link risk management activities with the organization’s strategic agenda, including aspirations regarding sustainability, innovation, efficiency, and growth.
Thirdly, I will identify and address the limitations of risk assessments and popularize risk preparedness and prevention among employees.
Lastly, I will offer awareness to the project team on the risk management process.”
18. How Can You Reduce The Risk Of Making Errors At Work?
The role of a risk manager is held to a high standard because unmitigated risks can translate to huge losses. Here, the interviewer wants to evaluate your ability to work with minimal or zero errors.
Tip 1: Provide a strategy that risk managers can use to reduce errors
Tip 2: Ensure to offer a practical measure that has worked for you
“Early on in my risk management career, I resolved always to double-check my work. Ever since, I have made sure to review my work to identify any errors. I crosscheck outputs for reliability and accuracy. Regardless of how small or huge the task is, I carefully review every aspect to ensure it’s free from errors. Moreover, I adhere to project risk management processes, document all details, and monitor and review risks. These efforts help to reduce risks and maintain high performance standards.”
19. Which Part Of The Risk Management Job Do You Consider Very Challenging?
Here, the interviewer wants to evaluate your ability to deal with challenging situations.
Tip 1: Provide a challenge that risk managers face in their risk management efforts
Tip 2: Demonstrate that you can handle the situation by giving a solution
“A risk manager empowers employees to minimize the possibility and severity of potential risks by making early risk identification. But I find it quite challenging to work with employees who care less about risks.
But in such cases, I will organize sessions to train the employee about risk management mechanisms and guide them on how to identify and handle risks in their units of work. I will also provide them with basic awareness of risks and help them understand how effective risk management can benefit them, their performance, and the company.”
20. Give A Major Challenge You Have Faced In Risk Management? How Did You Deal With It?
Here, the interviewer seeks to know what you consider a challenge and whether you can handle stressful and difficult situations.
Tip 1: Provide a challenge that highlights your skills
Tip 2: Briefly explain the action you took to win the challenge.
“During my last assignment, I managed risks relating to a software development project. Notably, the development team lacked programmers skilled in Java, and the business analyst had collected incomplete systems requirements. I managed to identify these issues early and began by liaising with the business analysis to get the missing requirements.
The business analyst contacted concerned stakeholders and was able to get all the requirements. About the development team, I engaged the team leader and the company leadership. I proposed outsourcing a Java expert, and that was accepted. Eventually, the expert was engaged during the development phase only. This move saved the company from the costs of employing a Java expert full-time. Thus, I eliminated the risks that could have occurred due to incomplete requirements and missing skills.”
These are but a few risk management questions for an interview that you must prepare yourself before attending an interview. Hopefully, these interview questions on risk management will help you land your next dream job.