Ten Predictions for 2020
The Only Certainty is Uncertainty
Global mobility has become the norm. Almost every organisation in the world, big or small, is venturing everywhere to conduct business. Even to complex and risky locations. The fact that today’s businesses are global is not new. But the risks presented by the globalisation of commerce are sometimes far from understood. Foreign direct investment inflows have increased nine-fold in the past thirty years: rising from 135 billion USD in 1988 to 1.35 trillion USD in 20181.
However, the economic impacts of global risks are rising too: non-communicable diseases are predicted to result in a cumulative lost output of $47 trillion USD between 2011 and 20302. And the costs of extreme weather events regularly exceed one billion USD3.
The key challenge facing organisations is not to be so preoccupied with global opportunities that they lose sight of their Duty of Care to their people. Organisations need to strengthen their resilience to ensure continued operation and survival in the face of risks. In 2020, it will be pertinent to add a layer of predictability to an increasingly unpredictable and uncontrollable world.
What worked yesterday, may not work tomorrow
To keep an evolving and increasingly mobile workforce safe, organisations must take the time to garner accurate insights from a range of sources to fully understand the challenges present in any location. Using global intelligence and on-the-ground experts makes it easier to monitor and forecast emerging events so that mobile employees are always taken care of. Whether businesses are dealing with an inconvenience or a threat to life, timely, clear and precise risk assessment is critical to protecting people and business resilience.
Technology has brought us both new capabilities and new threats: artificial intelligence and advanced communication tools allow us to more accurately analyse threats, and increase employee safety.
However, technology has also brought us cybercrime: a relatively new and unknown threat, compared to risks such as natural disasters that long-established organisations have been dealing with for decades. There is little historical understanding of cybercrime – how to prepare, prevent and protect your people and your business resilience.
The risk outlook is ever-evolving, and so should your preventative and protective approach.
Be suitably equipped, no matter your size or tenure
At current rates, 75% of the S&P 500 will be replaced by 20274. The growth of new market entrants is exciting from an entrepreneurial perspective, but often with rapid growth, Duty of Care can take a back seat.
Longer-standing, larger companies and multinationals in particular are often more attuned to mitigate risks – they have simply learnt and grown from experience and continue to do so. Many have established detailed support networks and their own response teams. Newer companies are often less aware of the issues and potential risks and threats. They are less able to invest in or prioritise the implementation of systems to help manage these.
In 2020, organisations, no matter their size, cannot afford to ignore their Duty of Care responsibilities – it can ultimately influence, if not define their survival. With appropriate expertise, a robust travel risk management strategy is within the reach of every organisation to protect their human capital.
1 World Bank https://data.worldbank.org/indicator/BX.KLT.DINV.CD.WD
2 World Economic Forum and Harvard University - The Global Economic Burden Of Non-Communicable Diseases
3 National Centers for Environmental Information https://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/billions/overview
4 Corporate Longevity Briefing, Innosight