Survey: Risk-readiness leads to organizational resilience

  • About ServiceNow
  • Cybersecurity and Risk
  • 2023
  • Sally Benford
July 31, 2023

Risk-readiness and organizational resilience: 3 workers collaborating in an office

Organizations worldwide face growing risks from rapidly changing technology, sustainability pressures, macroeconomic turmoil, and geopolitical disruptions. Risk-ready, resilient organizations can detect and respond to all these pressures more quickly, according to a global survey of 1,000 C-suite executives conducted by ServiceNow and ThoughtLab.

“In recent years, it’s become increasingly clear that building resilience against risk is a strategic investment that can help companies outperform,” says Ben De Bont, chief information security officer for ServiceNow and guest editor of the Summer 2023 issue of Workflow Quarterly.

Organizational resilience mitigates risk

With a rise in the frequency and sophistication of cyberattacks, many survey respondents don’t believe they have effective systems in place to detect and respond to cyberthreats. Just under half (49%) of risk-ready organizations—those that feel prepared to address technical, operational, and strategic risks—feel secure. And only 14% of other respondents say they can detect a cyberattack.

Although digital transformation can create new risks, it's also a key tool for risk mitigation. As evidence, 76% of respondents believe digital technology drives resilience. Additionally, 65% of risk-ready organizations say digitization will improve their detection of threats, as well as their ability to track risk across the enterprise.


% saying digitization will improve risk capabilities over next two years: ability to detect and track risks, speed of responding to risks, speed of capitalizing on opportunities, cross-functional collaboration

Resilience yields rewards

Integrating risk management offers numerous benefits, including fewer breaches and faster resolution times. That translates to positive financial results across the business.

Organizations that haven’t prioritized risk-readiness take a more pessimistic view, with 27% struggling to find a balance between innovation and risk management.

According to risk-ready organizations, the top three results of improved risk management are:

  • Greater customer satisfaction

  • Reduced costs

  • Higher profitability

Other key benefits include market share, improved employee engagement, and increased sales.

The road to risk-readiness

Companies are harnessing cloud computing, AI, data management, cybersecurity technology, and the internet of things, among other technologies, to manage risk. As tech and market conditions evolve, so does risk.


Top technologies used now, risk ready vs. others: cybersecurity, cloud/data storage, real-time risk analysis, mobile tech/apps, internet of things

Our research shows that risk-ready organizations tend to build risk-aware cultures. In fact, 59% of all CEO survey respondents agree that breaking down silos within the organization is essential to managing risk and fostering resilience, and 73% of CEOs believe technology is a key driver of resilience.

Those percentages are higher for other C-suite executives, especially chief information officers and chief risk officers, who play key roles in managing organizational risk. Additionally, 76% of leaders in the survey expect to hire outside consultants and risk experts in the next two years to assess risk and optimize organizational resilience.

Looking ahead, it's crucial for leaders to understand their unique business risks and put processes in place to ensure their organization’s future security.

Gain more insights in the Workflow Quarterly Summer 2023 issue.

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