Managed IT Delivers Enterprise Risk Management Benefits
It’s not unusual for business leaders to spend the wealth of their time resolving imminent problems or finding ways to increase revenue. Long-term strategies often trickle down the priority list or become peripheral items decision-makers treat as an inconvenient corporate box they’re required to check.
Entrepreneurs, CEOs, and other industry leaders have only so much personal bandwidth, and it makes at least short-term sense to invest in prompt returns. But the COVID-19 surge taught valuable lessons that strategies such as enterprise risk management (ERM) are vital to an organization’s survival. When entire economies went sideways, operations that prepared for crisis negotiated the disruption far better than many others.
Now that the pandemic appears to be in retreat — at least temporarily — it may be in your company’s best interest to consult with a managed IT firm and promptly develop an enterprise risk management plan.
Research Indicates Agile Response Requires ERM Plan
A recent Gartner study into pandemic response highlights the fact outfits that enjoyed a defined ERM were able to pivot and minimize disruption. The so-called “wait-and-see” approach proved deficient. But, to some degree, so did those businesses that paid lip-service to ERM plans. Pulling overcomplicated manuals and graphs to guide decisions were largely seen as cumbersome and sluggish. A Gartner report called “COVID-19 Makes a Strong Business Case for Enterprise Risk Management” highlights two underlying factors that deliver improved ERM results.
- Using a flexible “impact-based” strategy supports productive decision-making
- Organization leaders who provide clear and concise guidance during an escalation garnered success
The study also points out the uncertainty surrounding the pandemic escalation plays directly into traditional ERM deficiencies. Until this watershed crisis, models were typically based on emergencies that had definable consequences. War, famine, and severe weather impacts, among others, generally offer members of the global business community opportunities to pivot to secondary supply chains and other standard procedures to mitigate the impact. But in the 21st Century, technology appears to be an ERM necessity.
Managed IT Can Minimize Risk
With economies beginning to right themselves, leveraging managed IT strategies proved invaluable to many organizations. According to a Clutch Remote Work-Study, upwards of 66 percent of U.S. employees surveyed were working from home during the crisis at least part-time. Upwards of 44 percent worked five days per week during the height of the pandemic. That reportedly represents a 17-percent increase. Companies that successfully kept employees on task leveraged managed IT infrastructure. That’s why the following IT investments can prove essential in the event of a second coronavirus wave or an unanticipated crisis.
- Cloud-based Networks: Stay at home mandates proved that remote access has emerged as a crisis management necessity. Many organizations are also diversifying their footprint to include multiple Cloud providers.
- Secure Wireless Capabilities: Although the recent surge resulted in employees primarily accessing business systems from home, work-from-anywhere security would be a wise investment. If the coronavirus taught us anything, it’s that companies must account for uncertainty with wide-reaching and secure network access.
- Communication: Leveraging platforms such a Zoom and Google Meets, among others, allowed company leaders to conduct virtual meetings and communicate in real-time. Communication infrastructure remains a crucial ERM strategy.
- Task Productivity: Applications such as Microsoft Teams offer employees and administrators a space to work, collaborate, and achieve goals without commuting to a brick-and-mortar facility.
Industry leaders have an opportunity to use the coronavirus disruption as an instructional moment. Efforts that proved fruitful can become part of the ERM plan moving forward. But it’s essential to recognize that the IT tools used to buoy organizations through this crisis will likely evolve. That’s why working with a managed IT consultant on an ongoing basis is necessary for developing and updating your ERM plan.