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AFR Special Report: Risk reimagined

AFR Special Report: Risk reimagined

Balancing risk and return have always been a core question for companies. But in this new era of transparency, social currency and rapidly changing environments, risk functions need to evolve, be reimagined and be part of the front line.

Matt Tottenham

Partner, Risk Strategy & Technology

KPMG Australia


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Interactive story

Visit the AFR website to view the interactive story of this special report.


Read a copy of the AFR Special Report on Risk reimagined.

Roundtable participants

The AFR roundtable was moderated by James Dunn, Australian Financial Review and the panel included business and KPMG leaders:

  • Steve Allen, KPMG Consultant (formally CRO, Macquarie Group)
  • David Clarke – CRO, Queensland Investment Corporation
  • Sally Herman, Non Executive Director, Suncorp
  • Grant Murdoch, Non Executive Director, ALS
  • Matt Tottenham, Director, Audit, Assurance & Risk Consulting, KPMG.

Key highlights

  • Risk function needs to be remodelled – Organisations now experience greater scrutiny and higher regulatory demands, in addition to greater public expectations and heightened social media. Traditional models for risk management need to evolve and risk to be part of the front line of defence – risk needs to be a core function of any business.
  • Pace of change and understanding risks – The pace of change is adding to the complexity of risk – the need to really understand them and ensure that risk and reward are considered in commercial decisions. Reputational risk is more important than ever due to the pace of change. Non-financial risks often lead to financial impact. Data risk is one of the emerging risks.
  • Governance models need a rethink – As organisations are challenged by the current business environment, traditional models of governance need to be reimaged. Companies need to balance cost pressures and create value for stakeholders all in an environment of great visibility and scrutiny. Some responsibility for risk needs to be moved to the front line.
  • Getting the skill mix right – Senior risk people need to be involved in strategic decision making. The risk function should work closely with all part of the business, especially those customer facing, in addition to having the right training in place across the organisation.

Produced in association with the Australian Financial Review.

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