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Global Risk Management Survey

UK Results

Aon's Global Risk Management Survey collects and analyses business leaders' assessment of risk and risk management. The 2023 report is the ninth edition of the survey and the results from UK respondents reflect the increasingly interconnected nature of risk, with traditional business risks and people risks converging to create significant challenges for organisations.

Top 10 Risks Facing UK Organisations Now

The top 10 UK risks reflect a range of interrelated top-of-mind issues. As cyber-attacks become more sophisticated and frequent, and organisations embrace digitalisation, cyber security is at the top of the list and the knock-on effects from a cyber incident may result in reputational damage (#4) and business interruption (#6), both of which may affect the ability of a firm to attract or retain top talent (#2).

Inability to innovate and meet customer needs (#5) can be a direct result of talent shortages and has the potential to impact cashflow (#8), with the prospect of economic slowdown or slow recovery (#3) or business interruption (#6) exacerbating all these challenges.

Compared to the global findings, the UK ranks climate change higher than other regions. This reflects the high profile of the subject in the UK media from a variety of sources, including the impact of recent extreme weather events, changing government legislation affecting power generation and vehicles, impact on supply chains and active protests.

Top 10 Current Risks

  1. Cyber Attacks/Data Breach
  2. Failure to Attract or Retain Top Talent
  3. Economic Slowdown/Slow Recovery
  4. Damage to Reputation/Brand
  5. Failure to Innovate/Meet Customer Needs
  6. Business Interruption
  7. Regulatory/Legislative Changes
  8. Cash Flow/Liquidity Risk
  9. Supply Chain or Distribution Failure
  10. Climate Change

Explore the Global Results

Companies are grappling with traditional risks in new guises across both risk and human capital. How can business leaders best prioritise and respond to them?

View Global Report

Top 5 Risks Facing UK Organisations in the Future

As well as asking participants to select their current risks, to the survey also collects information on emerging risks, particularly to predict what the 5 most critical risks would be in three years’ time (2026).

While cyber-attacks and data breaches remains the top future risk, and economic slowdown climbs from #3 to #2, there are some nascent risks in the future list.

Artificial intelligence (AI) jumps in at #3, reflecting the significant increase in the pace of change of AI developments with large scale AI algorithms now being widely accessible. This is already affecting digitalised business activities such as producing images, video, music etc but also activities such as extracting structured data from documentation and making inferences. Geopolitical volatility is another increasing risk at #7; worldwide media now brings geopolitical conflicts to the fore extremely quickly, so the potential risk is now more visible, and actual events including wars, border shutdowns and national protectionism policies are all making the basis of future trading appear to be less stable.

Top 5 Future Risks

  1. Cyber Attacks/Data Breach
  2. Economic Slowdown/Slow Recovery
  3. Artificial Intelligence (AI)
  4. Climate Change
  5. Failure to Attract or Retain Top Talent

What Do the Results Mean for Organisations in the UK?

  • Organisations are operating in a world that is more uncertain than ever. Geopolitical and macroeconomic volatility is increasing and changing the risk landscape rapidly. On top of that, traditional business risks and human capital risks are becoming much more interconnected, making it difficult for organisations to respond to challenges.
  • In a period of rapid change and heightened volatility, finance, risk, and people leaders need to come together to better understand how these risks connect. The goal should be to form one version of the truth about the strategic and financial significance of their firms’ risk profile, and to follow a united strategy for mitigating, managing, and bringing capital to these exposures.

Better Decisions Start Here

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