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FERMA Says Risk Managers Play Major Role in Business Transformation

Risk Management
October 09, 2018

In a statement from the 2018 European Risk Management Seminar, the Federation of European Risk Management Associations (FERMA) said demand for sustainability, good corporate behavior, and rapid digitization are leading to profound changes in organizations and the work of risk managers.

Specifically, FERMA President Jo Willaert said, “The risk manager can be a copilot for the board and top management in this transformation."

He continued, "In Europe, we see that organisations need to be sustainable. This term—sustainable—can have different meanings, often linked with climate change. It can mean that organisations build their resilience to the effects of climate change and manage other environmental risks. Through innovation, they can also help to mitigate climate change and reduce its impact on the community.

"But sustainability is not just a green issue. It can also apply to good corporate behaviour as a whole, because companies depend on the acceptability of their practices to continue developing and prospering. Society is putting pressure on companies to disclose activities like their employment practices and human rights, diversity, and avoidance of bribery and corruption, as well as their environmental record."

In addition, Mr. Willaert said that, when it comes to digital transformation, we are seeing growing awareness of the value that professional risk management can add. "More than one-third of the risk managers who responded to the FERMA 2018 European Risk Manager Survey are already involved in the transformation of their organisations, including analysing risks linked to the development of new technologies. The relationship between risk management and IT, which was underdeveloped 2 years ago, is now reaching first-tier level."

According to the FERMA statement, these data are preliminary findings of the 2018 Survey, which FERMA will publish on November 29.

Mr. Willaert continued, "In terms of cyber risk, we are starting to find our way forward from the prophesies of cybergeddon to a situation where it is a manageable risk. Yes, it is an evolving and difficult risk, but one that we can approach with good risk management methods."

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