Using a flight risk assessment tools is a great way of making flight crew and operations depts. aware of the risk level associated with a flight or series of flights. The concept is to run through a list prior to flight of items given a predetermined value, then seeing what it all adds up to. The forms are usually customizable to allow each operator to set the various values and alert levels for the total sum. Depending on the sum a flight may require supervisor approval or reassessment. This will keep you ahead the aircraft in terms of what risks may be lurking and make you aware of the expected risk level.
The items on the list may include crew composition and experience, crew rest, Wx conditions, airport environment, MEL-items and so on. The list can be modified to suit any operation be it airline long-haul or helicopter external load operations. I would really recommend those of you who are not familiar with the concept to check it out.
Links of interest:
USHST FRAT introduction (pdf)
Preflight Mitigators FRAT (one of the solutions I have been testing)
There are many available solutions out there, many are free, so google it an see what you can find.