Risk Register

Here you can find a simple Risk Register template in Microsoft Word/Excel format, along with explanation on how to use it.


This is where you capture the risks that you’ve identified, add their assessment result, and finally, their response.

For the nature of the risk, you need to describe the risk, probably categorize it for easier management, and add some extra information such as the name of the person who has identified the risk and the date of identification.

Then, for assessment, the obvious values are probability and impact, which can then be combined into expected value. Expected value is calculated automatically in this template. There’s also a field to identify the importance of the risk based on its expected value and the thresholds that are defined in the second worksheet. You can also add proximity to your assessment.

Finally, you will decide about the risk responses and add them to the row. However, note that this template is very simple, and in many medium and large projects, you need to have a more sophisticated register. For example, each response can affect multiple risks, therefore, it’s not a good idea to have it as a field in this table, and the proper way of handling that is to have a separate table for responses and link them to this one. On the other hand, the assessment in this table is also very simple; in a serious risk management scenario, you need to have two sets of assessment, one for the initial risk, and one for the risk when the responses are considered (to check the effectiveness and justification of the responses), along with information about residual risks, fallback plans, etc.

Finally, like other register and log templates in this series, fields that have fixed lookup values are set to accept only those, and date fields are set to accept only valid dates. This is a good practice that reduces the possible mistakes.


The first worksheet is where you can capture the information, and the second one contains the lookup values.

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