As global business risks intensify, risk management is taking on an increasingly important role in companies around the world. A recent Accenture survey underlines this shift. Titled “Risk Management for an Era of Greater Uncertainty,” the study included respondents from 446 organizations around the world. Ninety-six percent said their business has an individual who functions as the chief risk officer, although in some cases without the formal title “CRO.” This is up substantially from the 78 percent of companies in Accenture’s 2011 survey that had designated a chief risk officer.
Perhaps even more telling, the person responsible for risk management has the ear of these companies’ senior leaders. In 81 percent of surveyed organizations, the risk management owner discusses risk issues with the board of directors on a regular basis (see Figure 1). In addition, in many organizations, risk management has moved from the responsibility of finance to fall directly within the domain of the CEO. (See Figure 2, below.)