Our Top Business Resilience Risks for 2018

Here at Inverroy we often discuss global, international and national trends and stories over a cup of coffee (and a cake if we’re lucky).  So we thought: what better time to share these thoughts than at the beginning of what is shaping up to be another busy and unpredictable year?

On the back of the publication of the Eurasia Group’s Annual Top 10 Risks Report, we sat down and outlined what each of us saw as the main resilience risk facing businesses in 2018.

“My concern for 2018 is around the loss of senior staff. The fluid nature of the wider labour force includes personnel in senior leadership roles moving more regularly than was previously the case. The churn created by such moves present risks in replacing those personnel, whether due to retirement or otherwise.  Succession planning seems to have dropped off many organisations radars of late.  Planning, spend and effort in cataloguing innate corporate knowledge, whilst protecting IP is crucial.  Failings in this area can disrupt the knowledge base, continuity of effort and focus, an organisation has for responding to a disruptive event.   In addition, it can undermine much of the hard work put in place by organisations in advance  of a crisis. Succession planning is therefore a must for businesses in 2018.” – Matthew


“I think EU GDPR – notably the changes regarding data breach reporting – will be a significant risk for some companies in 2018. Currently, companies are not compelled to declare data breaches, and many do not, for fear of the reputational damage it can bring.  From May 2018 this will change. GDPR provides a legal imperative to report data breaches if they are likely to result in risk to peoples rights and freedoms.  There is a grey area here as to where this reporting threshold sits, which could also cause some problems. While companies are gearing up to fortify what data they do possess, there will still be leaks and breaches. The concern for business resilience here is the effective management in the wake of them. The aftermath will test companies on their crisis communication and IT disaster recovery procedures, as well as prove the importance of transparent customer relationships & effective media management.” – Becks


“The uncertainty we face across the world in 2018 is my top business resilience risk for the year. There seems to be a feeling of complacency in some areas of the marketplace. While companies are facing uncertain economic and geopolitical climates, there is also a trend towards noncommital or declining investment approaches to infrastructure, staff and training. This suggests to me a short-sighted approach on the part of a lot of firms and individuals.  We hear increasingly often how people are living paycheck to paycheck, and businesses are extending projects beyond their intended lifecycle – with a view to maximising profits.  Business are facing challenges the like of which they have never experienced before, and this will only continue this year and beyond. Couple this uncertainty with the civil unrest we’ve seen globally, and 2018 looks unfortunately to be a year ripe for a crisis.” – Jeff


“It’s hard to talk about concerns for business resilience without remembering some of the high profile incidents of 2017. A lot of the ones that spring to mind – the NHS battling WannaCry, high profile data breaches worldwide, NSA and CIA having top-secret documents leaked – are seated within the realm of cyber and information security.In December alone, 33.8 million records were leaked as a result of attacks and negligence, and that was one of the quieter months. It’s not solely the malicious actions of hackers that should be focused on, however. Ageing technological infrastructure in many organisations will affect their ability to operate effectively – but more importantly, hold the door open for known security exploits to be used. Malpractice from employees and a lack of training in basic information security is another frequent cause of headaches within organisations. Throw in the velocity at which disruptive technologies are moving and the necessity for organisations to keep up with them and we’re left with my concern for 2018 – that it’ll be more of the same.” – Roger

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