Another RIMS conference has come and gone. And now that the mad dash is over, I’ve been able to reflect on all the great information that my colleagues and I absorbed while in Philadelphia. While the learning opportunities were many, a few themes dominated our conversations with risk professionals, as well as the conference education sessions:

Enterprise risk management is now an imperative

ERM is no longer a new concept shocking the systems of risk management departments and organizations. However, it is shifting from a once “leading-edge” initiative — implemented only at the most innovative of organizations — to an imperative at most organizations, regardless of shape or size, and regardless of whether risk departments actually have the resources to create and execute on an ERM framework.

Loss prevention prevails in the wake of so many non-insurable risks

Organizations of all sizes and types face daily risks that fall outside of the “insurable” risk space, driving an emphasis on loss prevention. So once a risk proves to be uninsurable, what’s a risk manager to do? Or how can such risks be uncovered in the first place? Risk managers are looking to tackle gaps in insurance with reductions in claims and loss prevention efforts, but they are struggling to accurately predict the risks that they need to prevent.

When predicting risks, data can be as elusive as crystal balls

Talk of the struggle to predict risks and prevent losses ultimately led to conversations around big data and predictive analytics — topics du jour at the conference (see video). How to use data and analytics to improve loss prevention and manage claims costs, and how to better manage data in order to achieve such outcomes, is clearly top of mind for risk professionals.

Recommendations for addressing risks associated with disruptive technologies (Excellence in Risk management Report)

  1. Educate yourself: Pay attention to the hits and misses and the emerging risks, especially around those technologies your organization is using or planning to use.
  2. Expand your network and foster collaboration: Build cross-functional relationships inside your organization.
  3. Push for investments: Learn which data and analytics tools will best suit your organization’s needs; then, make a case for investing in them.
  4. Consider the wider impacts for disruptive technology: Understand how the interconnected nature of disruptive technology risk impacts your various insurance contracts

The annual RIMS conference is always an invigorating experience — no matter how much sleep is lost or how much your brain is taxed while processing new information. As the RIMS president said in his closing remarks to conference goers, “don’t lose the momentum.”

Take the information you learned — either from attending the conference, or from watching videos and reading articles recapping the conference — and go make a difference. It’s time to “disrupt the status quo and join the risk revolution.”