Issue Management refers to the systematic identification, evaluation, and control of topics and problems that can occur in companies, organizations, or projects. Through the targeted use of issue management, risks can be minimized, opportunities can be leveraged, and proactive communication can be promoted. In this glossary entry, you will learn more about the basics, methods, and goals of issue management.
Definition and Fundamentals
Issue Management (also known as Topic Management) refers to the systematic and targeted handling of topics, problems, and questions that can arise in companies, organizations, or projects. This involves the early detection of risks, leveraging opportunities, and promoting proactive communication.
Goals of Issue Management
The goals of issue management can vary depending on the company, organization, or project. They generally include:
- Early detection of risks and opportunities
- Management and control of topics and problems
- Efficient and targeted communication
- Strengthening competitiveness
- Improving corporate and project performance
Process Steps in Issue Management
Issue management can be divided into the following process steps:
- Identification: The first step is to identify relevant topics and problems. This can be done through internal analyses, employee surveys, market observations, or exchanges with stakeholders.
- Evaluation: The identified issues are then evaluated in terms of their relevance, urgency, and impacts. Risk analyses or scenario techniques, for example, can be employed for this purpose.
- Prioritization: Based on the evaluation, the issues are prioritized and ranked. This ensures that the most important topics and problems are addressed preferentially.
- Strategy Development: Appropriate strategies and measures are developed for the prioritized issues to effectively manage and control them. This can be done by adjusting business processes, introducing new technologies, or conducting training.
- Implementation: The developed strategies and measures are implemented in practice and continuously monitored.
- Evaluation: In the final step, the successes and results of the issue management are evaluated, and conclusions are drawn for future topics and problems.
Methods and Tools of Issue Management
Various methods and tools are used in issue management to effectively identify, evaluate, and manage topics and problems. These include, among others:
- SWOT analysis
- Risk analysis
- Scenario technique
- Stakeholder management
- Early warning systems
- Monitoring and controlling
Integration into Project Management
Issue management can be excellently integrated into project management and can contribute to making projects more successful and efficient. The process steps of issue management should be aligned with the project phases and integrated into the project flow. Especially in complex projects with many stakeholders, issue management can play an important role in minimizing risks and managing opportunities and challenges.
Issue Management and Stakeholder Management
Issue management is closely linked to stakeholder management. Stakeholders are individuals or groups who are affected by the topics and problems of a company, an organization, or a project or have influence on them. By deliberately involving stakeholders in the issue management process, their needs and requirements can be better taken into account, and potential conflicts can be identified and resolved at an early stage.
Issue management is a central tool for identifying, evaluating, and managing topics and problems in companies, organizations, and projects. Through the targeted use of issue management, risks can be minimized, opportunities leveraged, and proactive communication promoted. Especially important are the systematic approach, integration into project management, and the involvement of stakeholders.