Many executives are expecting 2018 to be slightly less risky than the last two years, but many risks – including the rapid speed of disruptive technologies, cyber threats and regulatory changes – remain, poised to have “Significant Impact” on the enterprise, according to Protiviti and North Carolina State University’s ERM Initiative’s report: Executive Perspectives on Top Risks for 2018.
Respondents – primarily board members, CEOs, CFOs and other high-level executives – also indicated that they are planning to devote additional time and resources to identifying and managing risk over the next 12 months.
Agility and the ability to change with the times were top concerns for executives surveyed. The rapid speed of disruptive innovation was the top concern, especially as digital services and products upend business models. Relatedly, executives are also worried about whether or not their enterprise will weather the necessary changes to the business model without undue resistance. Enterprise culture is also a concern regarding responding to escalating risks in a timely manner; 61 percent of respondents rated this as a “Significant Impact” risk.
New to the top 10 list of risks this year are respondents’ concerns about their enterprises’ ability to utilize data analytics and Big Data to achieve competitive advantages and manage operations. Additionally, they are concerned about the ability of their organization to adjust existing operations to meet performance expectations as well as competitors do, which is especially pertinent to industries with more new competitors that are emerging onto the market with fully digital business models.