Facts make the difference between being confident in decisions made during a crisis and reacting in the heat of the moment. Take advantage of this relative calm within the storm to build competencies you wish you’d invested in before. Here’s where to start:   

  1. Consolidate your data in one place.Leaders need instant access to real-time risk data to make hard strategic choices that will drive organizational success. Get all risk data – on both insurable and noninsurable risks – together into one place where it can be analyzed, correlated, shared, and visualized in a human-friendly way for rational decision-making.  
  2. Add automation.Streamlining and automating routine tasks to monitor vendors, compliance, supply chain, and more adds efficiency and consistency to these functions, while speeding up critical response time in a crisis. Technology also can connect data across these functions, so you fully understand the impact of every risk and the consequences of every decision – inside or outside of a crisis. 
  3. Accelerate your digital transformation.The digital transformation already underway was thrust into full speed by COVID-19. As physical locations were shuttered, companies rushed to implement new technology to support remote work. Videoconferencing platforms, streaming services, document-sharing software are now routine – even for diehard fans of paper files. And there’s no turning back. Answers need to be in one reliable place that’s easily accessible to all. Period. 
  4. Monitor your vendors and third-party partners.The coronavirus reinforced how critical it is to check in with your third parties throughout the entire relationship, not just at onboarding. Regularly review your high-risk vendors to identify security or operational issues. And have a remediation plan in place for any critical risk and vulnerabilities that arise. 
  5. Streamline your compliance function.Companies that operated without well-defined controls before the pandemic were overwhelmed by the endless stream of recommendations, requirements, and mandates issued at the federal and state levels, as well as regional and local levels. As you rethink your compliance processes going forward, make sure you have clear and consistent controls in place, as well as supporting technology, to efficiently monitor compliance status.  
  6. Cut the red tape.Bureaucracy, silos, and personal fiefdoms all prevent you from getting what you need – that is, fast, reliable information on which to base decisions. Figure out where bottlenecks exist and address those pressure points, so employees don’t have to take matters into their own hands. Be open to new ways of thinking of how to cut the red tape without compromising integrity. 

In a crisis, getting facts quickly – and using those facts to inform your response strategy – is essential for a good outcome. Otherwise, every decision is nothing more than a shot in the dark.  

For more on recovering from crisis with resiliency, check out our e-book, Life After Lockdown: A Playbook for Crisis Recovery, Resiliency, and Restarting Rightand all of our crisis preparedness resources here.