3 Reasons Speed of Business Makes Risk Management Imperative

Technology is transforming our world, bringing us innovations like cloud computing, biometrics, wearables, the Internet of Things, and artificial intelligence. One by-product of these marvels is speed.   

Speed enables a business to run faster and creates competitive advantages. Speed also compounds risks and creates new ones for business. Organizations with digital processes encounter more IT risk, especially cyber risk, as well as other risks like business interruptions and third-party risk. 

We’re not the first to recognize a correlation between risk and speed. As PwC noted: “In an environment where speed is of the essence, the ability to manage risk and uncertainty is paramount.” 

With that in mind, we’ll look at three major risk management challenges brought about by speed and why a governance, risk management, and compliance (GRC) platform is a necessity. 

Proactively manage IT risk 

Many IT departments go from one crisis to another, which puts them in a reactive mode. It’s a problem that has grown steadily worse with the demand for speed. IT has numerous tools it relies on. However, to go from reactive to proactive, a powerful, holistic tool is needed. 

GRC platforms import, correlate and prioritize IT risks automatically. You can see results in a single view, enabling you to address the most severe findings first. You can also better understand your vulnerabilities and see them in context with other parts of the business. 

Visibility into IT risk comes from policies, controls, and compliance requirements all being centrally located and linked. These linked indicators help identify risks and vulnerabilities, resulting in early warnings that can help prevent breaches, fines, and damage to reputation. When an incident occurs, GRC platforms equip you to manage the entire incident remediation process, from investigation and root cause analysis to reporting and remediation. 

Prioritize third-party risk  

As business has picked up speed, it’s also increased its reliance on third parties. From traditional dealer networks, affiliates, and vendors to outside resources that support the supply chain, the quest for speed drives organizations to seek external resources that can help deliver faster. 

The risk identification tool of choice for third parties is assessments. A GRC platform facilitates the issuance and management of third-party assessments. You can also link your third parties to policies, risks, controls, and more. The connections can open your eyes to new indicators that point to a higher risk of doing business with a third party. 

Another risk management tool is third-party due diligence solutions like RiskRate. They continuously identify risks and spot changes. By adding due diligence to regular assessments, it makes for a powerful one-two punch, especially with high-risk third parties where things can change quickly. Your use of a GRC platform helps you spot trends, risks, and threats more quickly as data from assessments and due diligence is continuously updated and factored in risk analyses. For more guidance on managing third parties, download our Definitive Guide to Third-Party Risk Management.  

Plan to restore operations after interruptions 

Adverse events like loss of power or natural disasters that interrupt operations hurt output and productivity. The COVID-19 pandemic has proven this time and time again as organizations from all industries have experienced disruption and, as a result, have come to recognize the now undeniable value of business continuity planning.  

Managing business continuity plans in a GRC platform can lower the risk of adverse events happening and aid in speedier recoveries to full operations. You can plan and prepare for business interruptions while minimizing their frequency and impact. 

The same ease of assessing third parties applies to business continuity. You can perform risk assessments to determine asset criticality and availability needs. Next, link together assets, controls, and policies to identify and assess resource dependencies. Also, conduct business impact analyses to gauge financial impact of disruptions. If someone on the recovery team leaves the organization, the GRC platform will identify impacted areas that need addressing. 

As your organization pursues speed, a slowdown is costly. A production stoppage is disastrous. Business continuity planning helps lower the risk of interruptions and aids in faster recoveries. 

The speed of business in years to come 

The future is unknown and difficult to predict, but the future indicates speed as a driving force in business. Speed heightens risk and creates new risks. It means your organization will have to evolve how it manages risk to meet the challenges of tomorrow. For organizations employing a GRC platform, it’s full speed ahead next year and in the decade ahead. 

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