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5 Best Practices for Operational Risk Management

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Managing risk prevents procedural failures from becoming tangible losses, like regulatory fines, penalties, and reputational loss. Operational risk management (ORM) protects your organization from potential threats and lessens the impact of an event, should one occur. This process involves detecting, analyzing, and mitigating risks, along with improving outcomes through better decisions. 

Since risk is an inherent part of doing business, and human error is unavoidable, it’s necessary to have a strong operational risk management strategy. 

Here are the 5 best practices for managing operational risk in your company.

  1. Use risk management software

Workiva highlights how an operational risk management tool is the first thing you need to successfully manage risk. It can be extremely difficult to thoroughly assess and mitigate risk manually because there are far too many nuances and details to track. Plus, some tools provide automation to support your needs. The right tool will provide you with a plethora of financial reporting options, compliance integrations, and will connect your data from multiple sources to make your risk-based decisions more accurate.

These days, manual data management is nearly impossible. When it comes to key risk indicators (KRIs), you can’t afford to make mistakes. By using an operational risk management tool, you’ll reduce preventable oversights and mistakes, which will help you better manage risk.

  1. Accept risk only when the benefits outweigh the potential cost

Unnecessary risks don’t provide significant value to a goal. It’s never a good idea to take on unnecessary risk because the cost can be devastating. Unfortunately, many people, especially entrepreneurs, have a personal bias that distorts judgment and limits critical analysis. 

What makes a risk unnecessary? It’s not the level of the risk that determines whether it’s worth taking, but rather, the potential benefits. Your organization might be fine taking on high risk if the benefits will outweigh the cost, both financially and otherwise.

Regardless, all major risks should be cleared by senior management and stakeholders first.

  1. Address risk at the appropriate level

Decisions will be made at every level across your organization, so make sure risk decisions are made by the right people. For instance, employees shouldn’t be making decisions that have the potential to seriously impact the company, and managers need to ensure their employees have a strong understanding regarding how much risk they can bear and when to escalate a situation to a higher-up.

  1. Plan ahead for remediation

Part of operational risk management involves planning. The decision makers in your organization should be incorporating ORM into business processes, which requires time and resources. However, this should be part of every planning and execution phase.

  1. Categorize and prioritize your risks

You’ll need to categorize and prioritize your risks to get a good idea of what actions you should take and decisions you should make. This is done with a control matrix in five basic steps:

  • Identify your risks before conducting your assessments
  • Measure risk probability
  • Assess the potential impact
  • Calculate total risk
  • Update your control matrix accordingly

Within your risk control matrix, you’ll be prioritizing risks from the following categories: 

  • People risk. These are risks caused by people and human resources management. For example, hiring the wrong people, improper training, unmotivated team members, and high turnover rates often result in errors, fraud, and other ethical actions that can harm your organization.

  • Systems risk. When internal systems fail, losses can be devastating. This can include the loss of backups, downtime for networks, and other technical errors.

  • Process risk. When internal business processes are inadequate, your business can suffer. This includes things like product design flaws and failure to meet project deadlines or deliver projects to a client’s specifications.

  • External events risk. These risks are out of your control, like storms, floods, hurricanes, fires, and even manmade problems like robberies, terrorist attacks, and wars.

  • Legal compliance risk. When your business fails to comply with internal and external compliance regulations, the risks are great. These issues often involve tax and financial accounting regulations, internal ethical codes of conduct, and any other regulations imposed by a regulatory body governing your industry.

Operational risk management is critical for success

There are many ways to make a business successful, but if you don’t manage risk, one error or incident can tear down all your hard work. The best way to manage risk is to avoid it whenever possible. However, you can’t avoid all risk, and that’s where strategic risk management comes into play. Choose the risk you’re willing to accept, mitigate the potential consequences, and continue fine-tuning your decision-making process to respond better to similar risks in the future.

The idea of Bigtime Daily landed this engineer cum journalist from a multi-national company to the digital avenue. Matthew brought life to this idea and rendered all that was necessary to create an interactive and attractive platform for the readers. Apart from managing the platform, he also contributes his expertise in business niche.

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Business

Turning Tragedy into Triumph Through Walking With Anthony

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On the morning of February 6, 2010, Anthony Purcell took a moment to admire the churning surf before plunging into the waves off Miami Beach. Though he had made the dive numerous times before, that morning was destined to be different when he crashed into a hidden sandbar, sustaining bruises to his C5 and C6 vertebrae and breaking his neck.

“I was completely submerged and unable to rise to the surface,” Purcell recalls. “Fortunately, my cousin Bernie saw what was happening and came to my rescue. He saved my life, but things would never be the same after that dive.”

Like thousands of others who are confronted with a spinal cord injury (SCI), Purcell plunged headlong into long months of hopelessness and despair. Eventually, however, he learned to turn personal tragedy into triumph as he reached out to fellow SCI victims by launching Walking With Anthony.

Living with SCI: the first dark days

Initial rehabilitation for those with SCIs takes an average of three to six months, during which time they must relearn hundreds of fundamental skills and adjust to what feels like an entirely new body. Unfortunately, after 21 days, Purcell’s insurance stopped paying for this essential treatment, even though he had made only minimal improvement in such a short time.

“Insurance companies cover rehab costs for people with back injuries, but not for people with spinal cord injuries,” explains Purcell. “We were practically thrown to the curb. At that time, I was so immobile that I couldn’t even raise my arms to feed myself.”

Instead of giving up, Purcell’s mother chose to battle his SCI with long-term rehab. She enrolled Purcell in Project Walk, a rehabilitation facility located in Carlsbad, California, but one that came with an annual cost of over $100,000.

“My parents paid for rehabilitation treatment for over three years,” says Purcell. “Throughout that time, they taught me the importance of patience, compassion, and unconditional love.”

Yet despite his family’s support, Purcell still struggled. “Those were dark days when I couldn’t bring myself to accept the bleak prognosis ahead of me,” he says. “I faced life in a wheelchair and the never-ending struggle for healthcare access, coverage, and advocacy. I hit my share of low points, and there were times when I seriously contemplated giving up on life altogether.”

Purcell finds a new purpose in helping others with SCIs

After long months of depression and self-doubt, Purcell’s mother determined it was time for her son to find purpose beyond rehabilitation.

“My mom suggested I start Walking With Anthony to show people with spinal cord injuries that they were not alone,” Purcell remarks. “When I began to focus on other people besides myself, I realized that people all around the world with spinal cord injuries were suffering because of restrictions on coverage and healthcare access. The question that plagued me most was, ‘What about the people with spinal cord injuries who cannot afford the cost of rehabilitation?’ I had no idea how they were managing.”

Purcell and his mother knew they wanted to make a difference for other people with SCIs, starting with the creation of grants to help cover essentials like assistive technology and emergency finances. To date, they have helped over 100 SCI patients get back on their feet after suffering a similar life-altering accident.

Purcell demonstrates the power and necessity of rehab for people with SCIs

After targeted rehab, Purcell’s physical and mental health improved drastically. Today, he is able to care for himself, drive his own car, and has even returned to work.

“Thanks to my family’s financial and emotional support, I am making amazing physical improvement,” Purcell comments. “I mustered the strength to rebuild my life and even found the nerve to message Karen, a high school classmate I’d always had a thing for. We reconnected, our friendship evolved into love, and we tied the knot in 2017.”

After all that, Purcell found the drive to push toward one further personal triumph. He married but did not believe a family was in his future. Regardless of his remarkable progress, physicians told him biological children were not an option.

Despite being paralyzed from the chest down, Purcell continued to look for hope. Finally, Dr. Jesse Mills of UCLA Health’s Male Reproductive Medicine department assured Purcell and his wife that the right medical care and in vitro fertilization could make their dream of becoming parents a reality.

“Payton joined our family in the spring of 2023,” Purcell reports. “For so long, I believed my spinal cord injury had taken everything I cared about, but now I am grateful every day. I work to help other people with spinal cord injuries find the same joy and hope. We provide them with access to specialists, funding to pay for innovative treatments, and the desire to move forward with a focus on the future.”

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