One of the most powerful and increasingly popular risk assessment techniques is the BowTie method, so called because it describes the management of risk visually in the shape of a BowTie. This method goes beyond the usual risk assessment snapshot and puts emphasis on the linkage between risk barriers and the management system. It thus can help to ensure that risks are truly managed, not just analysed. It also helps practitioners undertake a comprehensive and structured approach to risk assessment, and it is also an excellent means of communicating risk issues to non-specialists.
Other techniques and approaches are also available, including AR&M (Availability, Reliability and Maintainability) studies, used to predict system availability (potential downtime) and to identify ways to improve reliability by considering both equipment failures and maintenance requirements. The SIL (Safety Integrity Level) method can also be applied at any stage of the design lifecycle and provides a practical way of demonstrating risk acceptability, including compliance with legislative requirements.