Are All Risk Jobs About Financial Risk?



The short answer to our title question, is no. 

Financial risk is certainly a term we are all familiar with, however, in a world that is continually shifting, evolving and finding itself subject to unexpected events; risk extends beyond the parameters of money alone.

As global warming moves steadily from a G8 talking point to real world issues causing mass flooding, earthquakes and fires; and ‘that which shall not be named’ (the Covid-19 pandemic) changing the world as we knew it in so many ways; risk jobs go far beyond just finances.

Careers in risk management have risen to the top of the heap as far as the pecking order for the world’s most important functions right now. Companies who hadn’t previously given risk a second thought, have rushed through risk committees and embarked on hiring campaigns for risk professionals. Across the board, regardless of sector, businesses are also having to navigate flexibility for employees to work from home, which in turn adds another layer to the issue of technology risk and data security. This is where well thought out risk management becomes a necessity.

So let’s look at some of the different areas of risk that you could find yourself working with as a risk professional in more detail:

Strategic risk comes into play when an organisation finds its position in the market under threat by a competitor. What internal or external events could impact the company and interfere with objective and strategic goals?

Compliance and Regulatory risk presides over how to manage new laws and regulations that may directly impact the way a company operates. It is vital for organisations to be aware of the rules and regulations that they need to adhere to and avoid costly violations.

Operational risk tackles the gamut of issues that could affect the smooth running of a business’s operations, from broken machinery and power cuts to loss of employees or raw materials. What company processes and systems pose a risk if they fail or are ineffective? What external events could impact how the business operates? How can these risks be mitigated?

Cyber Security and Technology risk is a facet of risk that has been steadily rising through the ranks of risk considerations over the past few years. The more we venture into the digital realm and entrust our data, sensitive information and that of our clients, consumers and stakeholders to digital and online systems; the higher the risk of that data being stolen, tampered with and misappropriated. 

Environmental risk deals with those aforementioned natural disaster-type events that can take down a business in the flash of a flood. It also works to ensure a company is environmentally friendly. So, as issues of sustainability, renewable energy and ESG become increasingly pertinent, this is an area that is sure to see even more growth for those working in risk.

Societal risk is another ‘hot topic’ area for risk jobs. The acceptance and integration of more and more marginalised communities, including LGBTQI, women, and racial minorities, has made this an area of risk management worth considering for those working in the space.

Employee risk ties risk professionals together with those in human resources to tackle issues greater than maternity leave returnees. For example, employees that help themselves to company assets, commit fraud or engage in violence within the workplace will need to be policed quite differently.

You will find risk jobs in pretty much every type of company you can think of, from Twitter, JPMorgan Chase and LEGO to Hyatt Hotels, Coca-Cola and Uber. Each has its own risk needs, which undoubtedly will incorporate financial risk but are definitely not limited to just that.


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