Managing projects is key to an IT leader’s role. But the risk management of projects could be a deal breaker for organizations, adding significant levels of responsibility to the portfolio of technology executives.
By taking risks that don’t pay off, the consequences can be serious: disrupted operations, decreased productivity, compliance gaps, audit risks, and even increased security threats.
McKinsey found that risks relating to ransomware attacks on financial services firms have gone up 900% in the past six to eight years. In another McKinsey study, it’s suggested that cybercrime is one of the top five risks identified by most executives (58% and increasing).
And Risk.net recently published these top ten business risks: IT disruption, theft and fraud, talent risk, geopolitical risk, information security, resilience risk, third-party risk, conduct risk, climate risk, and regulatory risk.
Business risk is a process problem.
Not only do IT leaders need to be highly skilled, but they depend on the support of tools and best practices that help them execute on the risk management of projects.
At the same time, embracing risk can come with perks. Moving away from traditional technologies and taking on new initiatives can lead to improved operational performance, cost savings, and compliance reassurance that pays off in the long run.
Adequate disaster recovery measures are a must-have
Staying abreast of compliance and regulations has become a major focus for IT in recent years.
For example, IT leaders need to be aware of state, federal, and international laws regarding data storage and transfer, privacy protocols, and other regulations that can result in costly non-compliance fines if violated.
Additionally, any unexpected disruptions or inefficiencies in the IT infrastructure can lead to delays or errors within operations that could result in significant financial losses to the company.
Compliance failures cause significant operational risks for companies — hefty fines and reputational damage — so it’s essential that all teams, including IT, are adequately protected. Proactively implementing measures to protect the organization from data leakage, breaches, or other information and resource mismanagement can help set organizations up for successful futures.
Risk can seem daunting, but with every problem comes opportunity. By addressing risk, IT leaders are free to identify new opportunities for IT infrastructure expansion. Addressing risk also gives IT leaders opportunities to better anticipate emerging risks, as well as gain a better understanding of governing regulations and how they impact technology investments and cost-saving initiatives.
Risk management of projects simplified with business process management and automation
By consistently and thoroughly reviewing existing processes, IT leaders can identify, resolve, and minimize the effects of any issues or risks that may arise. Additionally, process automation further reduces risk for IT leaders by automating error-prone and manual tasks, minimizing the risk of data errors, compliance failures, and security breaches.
Process management and automation also offer opportunities for IT leaders to identify any benefits or advantages that come with new technologies or improved workflows. Proactively managing and automating these processes allows for best practices to be set, which others in the organization can follow. In essence, process management and automation ensure that IT leaders are ahead of the game instead of playing catch-up after something goes wrong.
Understanding IT and business processes in detail better equips IT leaders to identify opportunities for innovation and risk management. Additionally, process automation increases the efficiency of operations, leading to a number of potential benefits such as cost savings and enhanced business performance. By managing and automating processes, leaders will also gain a better understanding of impending issues such as system failure and disaster recovery.
See what good IT process management looks like:
What do your processes say about your risk profile?
Processes are only useful when they’re regularly managed and updated to reflect the way an organization does business. Otherwise, IT leaders will end up with broken processes that expose them to additional risk.
For example, if your new staff technology provisioning process doesn’t reflect the current state, you could provision a new employee their laptop a week after their start date, or even worse, assign incorrect permission privileges and risk a data confidentiality breach. Managed and automated processes prevent this from happening.
Many IT departments simply put up with such business process problems, which slowly erode productivity and build the company’s exposure to risk over time. The catalyst for change only comes when there’s a breach in compliance, regulations, failed audits, or even reputational damage.
Process management and automation can drastically improve your IT team’s efficiency by allowing for streamlined operations, constant optimization, and identification of potential risks.
Solutions for IT leaders and their teams
IT teams are often viewed as impeding their organization’s ability to efficiently automate tasks and processes, as they work to protect their organizations against risk.
But help is at hand for IT leaders who are spearheading the risk management of projects. In this eBook, Business risk is a process problem, you can explore:
- Business risks IT leaders need to know about
- Tips for taking a holistic approach to managing risk
- How companies are using process management and automation to manage risk