Economic pressures and persistent inflation have replaced competition for skilled workers as the top near-term risks for business leaders worldwide, according to a survey by Protiviti and NC State University’s ERM Initiative. The survey examines the most pressing business risks for the next year and decade. In addition to economic development and the supply of skilled workers, executives are increasingly concerned about cyber threats, which respondents believe represent the greatest risk for the next decade in both the short and long term.
The 12th annual survey, “Executive Perspectives on Top Risks for 2024 and a Decade Later,” was conducted by international consulting firm Protiviti and NC State University’s Enterprise Risk Management Initiative (ERM Initiative). Study surveyed more than 1,100 board members and C-suite executives of companies across a variety of industries worldwide to assess 36 macroeconomic, strategic and operational risks on a sliding scale of 1 to 10 over a one-year time horizon (2024). a decade (2034).
The top risks for 2024
A significant trend reversal was observed in the most important risks for the coming year. Six of the top 10 risks from last year’s list – including the highest rated short-term risk – are no longer among the top 10 risks for 2024. The economic conditions and inflationary pressure represent the greatest risk in 2024. A trend that was already apparent in the surveys of the last two years is continuing: finding and retaining skilled workers and at the same time further developing the culture and the workplace continue to count to the biggest problem areas. Of the 36 macroeconomic, strategic and operational risks assessed in the survey, the top five risks for 2024 are:
Economic conditions, including inflationary pressures
Recruiting, developing and retaining highly qualified specialists, dealing with changing employee expectations and challenges in succession planning
Third Party Risks
Tightening regulatory requirements and controls
The top risks for 2034
Respondents also assessed the expected impact of these 36 risks over the next decade, up to 2034, to reflect how the risk landscape could change over the next 10 years.