Business is complacent about brand and reputation say 70% of executive directors, despite being a significant risk

Aon launches Underrated Threats Report 2015 at FERMA with analysis from captive executives across 60 countries.

Aon Risk Solutions has launched an in-depth look at underrated threats which emerged from Aon’s earlier Global Risk Management Survey. 

Aon strongly believe that damage to reputation should be viewed as a significant business risk, yet only 44 percent of executive and non-executive directors surveyed agreed with this.  Many believe that business is complacent about brand and reputation believing it to be ‘out of sight and mind’ before a crisis occurs.

Rory Moloney, CEO of Aon Global Risk Consulting, said “Damage to brand and reputation can become a significant business risk.  The speed of technological advancement, coupled with societal, economic and political changes means that reputational damage is an increasing concern. This report analyses the responses of senior executives in large organisations with key captives to understand their concerns and needs.”

Including damage to reputation and brand, the report focuses on five additional themes:

- Risk connectivity: The speed at which mobile technology is changing is creating a rapidly expanding network of new connections between individuals, groups and companies. Despite this, 80 percent of respondents believe that the interconnectivity of risk still not widely understood.

- Cyber risk: Nine out of ten respondents validated our assessment that cyber risk is still not fully understood. 78 percent of have indicated that the risk readiness level for cyber risk has, or may have been, vastly overstated.

- Political risk was also viewed as a significant threat. 63 percent of respondents felt that political risk had been seriously underrated. The ongoing uncertainty across the Eurozone and various geopolitical conflicts was of serious concern, particularly to EMEA respondents.

- Board input: 70 percent of surveyed captive directors agree with our assessment that it is imperative for senior executives and the boards of directors to communicate with risk managers and take an active role in assessing and covering the company’s risk exposure. 

- Damage to brand and reputation. Despite high profile crises that have impacted on reputation and brand, more than half the participants in EMEA (54 percent) recognize that reputation and brand damage should be in the top spot. Only 35 percent in the Americas agreed.

Stephen Cross, Chief Innovation Officer, Aon Risk Solutions said “The current world of risk is predictably unpredictable. The interconnectivity of traditional and emerging risks means organisations can no longer evaluate individual risks in isolation but must look at all the top risks and people in a more holistic way. Aon’s role as advisers on the topic of risk is to constantly explore, assess and express a point of view on the impact of these forces and what may lie over tomorrow’s horizon.”

The Underrated Threats Report 2015 was a web-based survey issued to executive and non-executive directors of captive insurance companies to provide feedback on key issues raised connected to the findings first published on the Aon Global Risk Management Survey 2015.

The survey can be found at www.aon.com/underratedthreats