Canadian businesses have identified five major risks to their operation – and these reflect how their risk assessments have changed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Aviva Canada surveyed 1,500 Canadian businesses of all types and sizes surveyed for the report. This is the first Canadian report of its kind to help businesses make sense of their specific risks, better manage those risks, and prepare for the future.
According to respondents, their top five business risks are:
1. Public health events
2. Cyber security and cyber incidents
3. The health and mental wellbeing of employees
4. Shortage of skilled workforce
5. Business interruption, including disruptions in supply chain
Other key findings of the report include:
· While 45% of respondents had indicated that the COVID-19 pandemic will have a negative long-term impact on their businesses, 47% said the impact is instead positive - it was noted that one of the undeniable trends in the wake of the pandemic was the acceleration of technological adoption.
· Realty (40%), business and professional services (36%), manufacturing (31%), and retail (31%) were the leading industries in terms of cyber security risk rating.
· Incidentally, realty (60%), business and professional services (51%), retail (49%), and manufacturing (45%) had the highest concern for employee and customer health/wellbeing over the pandemic.
· Both the hospitality and construction sectors are at considerable risk of skilled labour shortages; 31% of hospitality businesses had indicated in the survey that labour shortages were a "serious" risk.
· 27% of businesses see business interruption, such as supply chain disruption, as a major threat going forward.
Since the start of the pandemic, businesses have needed to reassess their business risks and revise their business planning to better manage the changing risks to their operation in order to become resilient to economic changes.
A key takeaway is the rise in the concern over an adequate and healthy workforce. With Covid, there has been significant reductions in availability of skilled workers in various business sectors. Without proper levels of trained workers, the risk to business operations has increased significantly.