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There is a Difference – Adaptable Risk Management Technology and Expert RMIS Support

arrows pointing in opposite directions

Chances are you’ve already seen—in LinkedIn posts, online articles, or elsewhere—examples of RMIS functionality that allows for the mapping of data related to the COVID-19 pandemic. More specifically, risk management technology features that allow clients to track risk exposures and impacts by combining data in their RMIS with information from third-party sources such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the World Health Organization (WHO), and Johns Hopkins University.

The ability to move quickly to understand and respond to risk events is dependent on technology. But as we are reminded in moments of crisis like the one risk managers face today, it is also powered by people and their approach to putting that technology to work based on the specific needs of individual businesses. 

This raises a number of questions. If you need a quick change, can they accommodate that? How much of the change can you do yourself? How long is the wait for a response to your ticket? Does your vendor have the capacity to help their clients pivot? And does a RMIS provider trust their employees to create such solutions—or are members of a service team expected to work through a script or a list of checkboxes? read more

Webinar: Track the Risk and Impact of COVID-19

In March 2020, Origami responded to the coronavirus pandemic by presenting some of the solutions we developed by partnering with clients to monitor the impact of COVID-19, including employee tracking, new incident types, disaster recovery guides, and location impact surveys. As part of an initiative to share risk technology knowledge with our community and highlight real-life scenarios and configurations, the webinar was led by Christian Schiavone and Minda Rossman, both directors of professional service—with Bob Petrie, CEO, speaking on behalf of the organization’s response to COVID-19 as a whole. The team highlighted the following new solutions developed in coordination with our clients:

  • Map Visualizations
  • Employee Exposure Tracking
  • New Incident Types
  • Disaster Recovery Plan
  • Location Impact Survey

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How Companies Can Support Their Employees (and Clients) During COVID-19

Globally, we are seeing companies being pushed into having a remote workforce, whether they are ready for it or not, especially as more US states and countries issue shelter-in-place orders to slow the spread of COVID-19. While shifting to a remote workforce may seem like an impossible feat, there are steps you can begin taking now to help your employees transition, and by extension, improve the experience of your clients. Since our inception, Origami Risk has valued its remote capabilities and the talented team we’ve been able to curate because of it.

Whether you are a work-from-home veteran or not, we’re all facing unique challenges in this new environment—from learning to work alongside your spouse and kids, to dealing with the challenges of conferencing technology—there is always a learning curve when transitioning from office to home. As a company of “remote work gurus,” we’d like to help make that learning curve a little shorter by sharing what helps Origami’s dispersed team efficiently work from home, all while servicing clients without interruption.

Have Readily Available Resources and Training

Some employees have fully equipped home offices, while others may have difficulty adjusting to their new work environment for a number of reasons. From a lack of technological savvy, difficulty working without a second monitor, or simply the social adjustment that comes with telecommuting, there are a number of obstacles that can work against an organization that’s suddenly forced to shift to a fully-remote workforce. First and foremost, it’s important to check in with employees to make sure they’re equipped with the tools and resources needed to effectively work and service their clients.

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How Claims Operational Efficiency Impacts Employee Satisfaction

What are the true costs of the repetitive, simple administrative tasks claims adjusters perform throughout the course of the workday? Inefficiencies stemming from manual procedures and repetitive tasks can directly impact the bottom line of claims organizations. Added to this are hidden costs that organizations may be less likely to account for: the impact those types of procedures and tasks can have on employee engagement and job satisfaction levels.

The Hidden Costs of Repetitive Tasks

As shown in a study published by the Society for Human Resource Management, when employees are required to perform repetitive tasks, they quickly lose interest and a sense of purpose. These employees are both less satisfied and less engaged. With reduced rates of job satisfaction comes the increased likelihood of turnover and the costs associated with hiring and training new adjusters.

There are also missed opportunities associated with high levels of engagement and wellness. Laid out in the Forbes article, 10 Timely Statistics About The Connection Between Employee Engagement And Wellness, these benefits can include reduced employee burnout, more empowered employees, and increased rates of profitability.

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Demystifying ERM

Enterprise Risk Management (ERM) is all too often shrouded in ambiguous, confusing terminology that provides little clarity as to what, exactly, ERM programs do. It’s also not uncommon for an organization facing a barrage of evolving risks (cyber, reputational, supply chain, environmental, etc.) to create an ERM program with the hope/assumption that somehow — as if by magic — those risks will be mitigated. It is no wonder then, that many stakeholders remain confused or highly skeptical about the effectiveness of ERM programs, even as they recognize the pressing need to do something about emerging risks.

Proponents of ERM frequently point to heatmaps as a primary deliverable, which may only make the situation worse. While heatmaps can be a good tool when used properly, they aren’t necessarily the end goal. Furthermore, when used improperly, they simply highlight risks that the organization already knows about. The article Five Benefits of Enterprise Risk Management summarizes what this can lead to:

“Many organizations struggle with implementing ERM and identifying how, and at what level, to integrate it into their organization. Managers often say they are already aware of the risks for their respective areas of the business. In these situations, what value does ERM provide, and how does it enable better perspectives and management of risks and risk data?”

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Expand your RMIS options? Or wait and see?

Over the past 4 years, 3 of the 4 major Risk Management Information System (RMIS) vendors have been acquired by private equity investors. That amount of consolidation, in what was previously a very stable market, really is astounding. What does vendor consolidation mean for RMIS users? And more importantly, what does it mean for you and your team?

The impact of RMIS market consolidation is almost certain to rank low on any risk manager’s list of concerns. There are more critical issues on which to focus—renewals in a commercial property insurance market that continues to harden, adequately evaluating and insuring against cyber risk, taking a more proactive approach to loss prevention, or developing an ERM program, to name just a few.

Those who depend on their RMIS for basics such as consolidating a handful of TPA feeds and reporting on claims data, RMIS mergers and acquisitions may barely register. For risk managers and their team members who use their RMIS on a day-in and day-out basis, the potential effects of consolidation—in particular, the ability or willingness of a RMIS vendor’s owners to invest in improvements in technology and support, rather than preparing for future sale—are worth considering.

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What Risk Managers Can Learn from the Coronavirus Crisis

The alarming spread of the new coronavirus and its potential effect on the global business environment can be seen in recent financial market adjustments. The hyper-quick emergence of this risk is likely to spur a number of questions for risk managers whose organizations have international reach:

  • What happens if the coronavirus expands and becomes a pan-Asia crisis?
  • What do we do if our supply chain in large parts of Asia is threatened?
  • Does potential market upheaval have the potential to threaten critical capital projects?
  • Will this disrupt R&D that relies on technical research taking place in the region?

As troubling as these questions are, there is a wider view that is potentially even more unsettling.

The curse of living in interesting times

“May you live in interesting times” is a proverb that was supposedly intended as a curse upon enemy states. Recent events demonstrate why that should not be considered a blessing. Houston endured a 500-year flood three years in a row. Preemptive power shutdowns last year in Northern California illustrate the effects of colliding risks (wildfires from extended droughts and inadequate energy infrastructure) on the business environment. Geopolitical risks with far-reaching ramifications (from the unknowns of Brexit to the escalating tensions between the U.S. and Iran) are mushrooming.

Applying a traditional approach to enterprise risk management in such turbulent times could lead to disastrous results. Fortunately, the coronavirus crisis offers three valuable lessons that could help all organizations be much better prepared to face similar challenges.

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Three trends from the 2020 Origami Risk User Conference

Origami Risk users gathered in San Antonio from January 12-16 for our 2020 User Conference. The fifth such event hosted by Origami, this iteration of the conference was the largest to date, with more than 500 people representing organizations from across the risk and insurance industry in attendance.

Collaborative, hands-on learning opportunities led by members of the Origami service team ranged from “boot camps”—introductions to the system for newer users—to instruction on setting up dashboards and reports to more advanced topics such as system administration. Attendees also had the opportunity to meet with an Origami expert for one-on-one sessions for a closer look at specific features or areas of the system they wanted to know more about.

Client co-presenters led sessions covering a wide range of topics including GRC, underwriting, safety, audits, and claims administration, to name just a few. As in previous years, the delivery of actual use cases and the opportunity for those attending sessions to ask questions about the ways in which Origami Risk is being used to address “real world” challenges provided a unique opportunity for peer-to-peer learning. read more

Why the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) may be the tip of the regulatory iceberg for compliance

On January 1, 2020, a new California regulation went into effect that may push many unsuspecting enterprises doing business in the state into costly noncompliance while also introducing reputational risk and threatening their brands. The California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) grants new consumer rights related to data storage, use, and protection. Companies failing to comply with these rules can be fined up to $7,500 for each violation. Despite the potential impacts, a recent survey by the IT security firm ESET shows how ill-prepared most enterprises are regarding this new compliance obligation:

  • Nearly half of all respondents had never heard of CCPA
  • More than 8 in 10 respondents did not know if the law even applied to their business
  • A third of executives were unsure if their organizations needed to change how consumer data was stored/processed
  • Nearly 1 in 4 respondents “didn’t care” about becoming compliant
  • More than half had not performed a risk assessment on cybersecurity within the past year

Given the stakes involved, this broad lack of urgency is concerning but not all that surprising. A DataGrail survey indicated that despite investing thousands of hours and being given a two-year head start, only half of the companies reported achieving compliance with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), a similar data privacy regulation in Europe. Additionally, 70% of enterprises admitted the systems they were currently using to comply would not scale. When the pace of regulatory change is accelerating so rapidly, most enterprises are being caught flat-footed.

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The Importance of GRC as a Risk Initiative: Q&A with Mary Upshaw

Origami Risk has expanded its operations in the UK, Europe, and Middle East due to rapid growth in the region. Mary Upshaw, Head of Professional Service – EMEA at Origami, discusses the current risk landscape, expected trends, and the role technology plays in an effective GRC programme.

From the perspective of a client executive who is working very closely with UK and EMEA-based organisations, what are the most pressing issues risk managers face in regards to GRC?

There are a few that come to mind. The first is dealing with regulatory change. How do organisations stay on top of risk associated with regulatory compliance when the landscape is constantly changing, the jurisdictions that companies reside in are growing, and laws around privacy are growing?

The second is getting different groups and departments within an organisation to work together toward a shared GRC approach. For example, there might be an internal controls team that rolls up through the CFO; an enterprise risk management (ERM) team that works for the CRO; a business continuity management (BCM) unit that flows through a CTO; and a compliance group that reports to the general counsel’s office. Risk managers need to set a tone that conveys that all of these groups must work together in order to reap the benefits of GRC.

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