Why every business needs to know about enterprise risk management

In an increasingly complex world, businesses need to be more disciplined in managing risk to stay competitive—and profitable. Even a small mistake can have disastrous consequences. Therefore, every small to already established business should have a comprehensive ERM program.

Enterprise Risk Management (ERM) A process that helps organizations identify, assess, and manage risks that may affect their business objectives Provides a framework for making informed decisions about allocating resources and managing risks in ways that protect and enhance shareholder value.

Without batting an eyelash, this article will share with you why your business needs ERM—and how you can implement it today.

3 Reasons Why Enterprise Risk Management Matters

An effective ERM will:

  • Safeguard Company Assets

A significant part of a company’s risk management strategy is to protect its assets. This includes property, inventory, data and money.

By identifying and assessing the risks that could affect these assets, businesses can take steps to reduce the likelihood of loss.

  • Minimize the impact of incidents

Things happen, even in the best-run businesses. But enterprise risk management can help mitigate its impact. This will minimize financial loss, reduce reputational damage and avoid legal liability.

When businesses clearly understand their risks, they can make informed decisions about how to respond. This leads to better outcomes for the company and its stakeholders.

What is Integrated Risk Management (IRM) in ERM?

IRM is a subset of ERM that focuses on identifying and mitigating risks associated with business technology. Both are necessary and sufficient practices to ensure your company remains secure.

It’s a holistic approach that recognizes that all types of risk (financial, operational, strategic, reputational, etc.) are interconnected and you need to manage them in an integrated manner.

Implementing IRM can be a challenge for organizations, but the benefits outweigh the costs. Benefits include:

  • It is the most effective way to manage risk and protect an organization’s assets, reputation and bottom line.
  • Provides a framework for identifying, assessing and responding to threats in a proactive and coordinated manner.
  • Helps organizations better prepare and respond more effectively to unexpected events.
  • Helps organizations improve their decision making by taking all types of risks into account.
  • Improves communication and coordination between different departments and functions within an organization.

But which should be your first port of call? IRM or ERM? Generally, it is best to start with IRM when implementing a new risk management program.

Once the IRM program is in place, the organization can then focus on implementing an ERM program, which focuses on identifying and managing risk at the strategic level.

Elements of Enterprise Risk Management

There are a few things every business owner or newcomer should know about enterprise risk management. ERM is built on eight key elements:

1. Code of Conduct

The Code of Conduct sets out the expected standards of behavior for all employees. It provides a framework for managing the risks of unethical or illegal behavior.

A well-designed code of conduct can help prevent and detect wrongdoing and provide a basis for taking disciplinary action when necessary.

2. Objective setting

To set goals an organization must first identify its key stakeholders and risk tolerance levels. Once done, the organization can develop a risk management strategy tailored to the needs of these stakeholders.

This strategy should protect the organization’s assets and reputation while ensuring it meets its regulatory obligations.

3. Risk identification

Here, the organization needs to identify the risks it faces, both external and internal. These risks can come from a variety of sources, including financial, operational, reputational, and compliance-related threats.

You can use a variety of methods to identify risks, such as brainstorming, reviewing historical data, and interviewing key personnel. Once you’ve identified potential risks, analyze and prioritize them to implement appropriate mitigation strategies.

4. Risk assessment

This assessment should include an assessment of the likelihood of each risk occurring and the potential impact if it occurs. Risk assessment uses quantitative or qualitative methods to reduce the likelihood and impact of adverse events. Risk assessment is an ongoing process that should be regularly reviewed and updated.

5. Response to risk

It involves the development of mitigation strategies to reduce the likelihood or impact of each identified risk. Risk response may include risk management tools and techniques, such as:

  • Risk Reduction – Reduce the threat to minimize impact.
  • Risk taking – If the problem is insignificant, take it.
  • Risk Avoidance – Avoid the problem.
  • Risk Transfer – Assign mitigation responsibilities to a qualified third party.

The goal is to minimize the negative impact of risk and maximize the opportunity for positive outcomes.

6. Internal business environment

The internal business environment includes company culture, organizational structure, and resource allocation. Keeping a close eye on the internal business environment is essential as it can significantly affect the company’s overall risk profile. If there are problems within the organization, they can often be magnified in terms of risk.

7. Information and Communications

Effective communication helps ensure that all stakeholders are aware of the risks associated with the business and understand how these risks are being managed.

Information must be accurate and up-to-date so that everyone has the same understanding of the situation.

Good communication helps build trust between the various parties involved. If stakeholders feel they are being kept in the loop and can openly discuss risks, they are more likely to have confidence in managing those risks.

8. Monitoring

Monitoring helps keep track of all activities, risks and potential solutions to address them. It is essential to have a system that measures progress towards desired outcomes.

Monitoring tracks progress toward desired outcomes by collecting data on key risk indicators, such as the percentage of on-time bills or the number of unclaimed benefits.

ERM does not only involve manual data collection; This includes understanding current trends and patterns to identify potential problems before they become problematic. As such, monitoring is an ongoing process that requires constant vigilance.


The global financial crisis has demonstrated that the world is still not immune to significant risks. These risks come from several sources:

  • Political unrest and violence
  • Natural disaster
  • Epidemic
  • cyber attack
  • Economic uncertainty

These threats are always part of the picture and can become more if not remedied. So, businesses need to do more than protect their assets from risk — they need to reduce burden and risk to continue doing business.

Whether you need help managing risk for a small business or a large corporation, both ERM and IRM provide strategic frameworks that can help you manage risk effectively.

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