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Economy, Inflation Outrank Talent and Technology as Primary Risk for Global Business Leaders Next Year, Protiviti-NC State University Survey Finds

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Disruptive market and geopolitical risks are testing business agility and resilience

MENLO PARK, Calif., Dec. 7, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — Economic pressures and persistent inflation have unseated the war for talent as the top near-term risk facing business leaders around the world, according to a new survey from Protiviti and NC State University’s ERM Initiative. The survey measures the most pressing business risks over the next year as well as the next decade. Beyond the economy and talent market, business leaders are also increasingly concerned about cyber threats in both the near and long-term, with this risk ranking as the top concern of respondents over the next decade.

The 12th annual survey, “Executive Perspectives on Top Risks for 2024 and a Decade Later,” was conducted by global consulting firm Protiviti and the NC State University Poole College of Management’s Enterprise Risk Management (ERM) Initiative. The study surveyed more than 1,100 board members and C-suite executives from organizations worldwide in a variety of industries, asking them to rate 36 macroeconomic, strategic and operational risks on a sliding 1-10 scale across one-year (2024) and one-decade (2034) time horizons.

The Top Risks for 2024
There was significant turnover in the top risks over the coming year, with six falling out of this year’s top ten list for 2024 versus last year, including the top near-term risk. Economic conditions and inflationary pressures emerged as the top near-term risk for 2024. Continuing a trend highlighted by the last two years’ surveys, finding and retaining talent while managing culture and workplace evolution remained a major concern. Of the 36 macroeconomic, strategic and operational risks assessed in the survey, the top five risks identified for 2024 are:

  1. Economic conditions, including inflationary pressures
  2. Ability to attract, develop and retain top talent, manage shifts in labor expectations, and address succession challenges
  3. Cyber threats
  4. Third-party risks
  5. Heightened regulatory changes and scrutiny

The Top Risks for 2034
Survey respondents also rated the expected impact of the same 36 risks for a decade out, into 2034, assessing how the risk landscape might shift over the coming decade. The top five risks identified for 2034 are:

  1. Cyber threats
  2. Ability to attract, develop and retain top talent, manage shifts in labor expectations, and address succession challenges
  3. Adoption of digital technologies requiring new skills in short supply
  4. Rapid speed of disruptive innovations enabled by new and emerging technologies and/or other market forces
  5. Heightened regulatory changes and scrutiny

“The economy, inflation and cybersecurity clearly loom large on the executive risk agenda, but the best leaders realize that all these risks are intertwined and need to be addressed as a whole, not in parts,” said Matt Moore, global leader, Risk and Compliance, at Protiviti. “C-suites and boards need to be nimble to address concerns on a variety of strategic and operational fronts and keep pace with the speed of change. Leaders are expected to manage multiple external risks effectively without disruptions to operations, productivity or profitability.”

Although not recorded as a top risk, geopolitical events had a significant ripple effect across the risk landscape. Before the events that took place in the Middle East on October 7, 2023, the survey found that no risk issues were rated at the “Significant Impact” level for 2024, but in the responses gathered following the attacks, many risks increased and four risk issues were rated at the “Significant Impact” level.

“It is still an open question of whether or not recent economic developments and central bank policies will lead to a soft landing or a recession that would force organizations to make dramatic changes,” said Carol Beaumier, a senior managing director in Protiviti’s Risk and Compliance solution and leader of the firm’s global thought leadership program. “Alongside this uncertain economic picture has come regulatory change in wide-ranging and pervasive areas, meaning that business leaders need to plan for a range of outcomes as to how these changes will affect their operations.”

Looking out a decade, cybersecurity is the most pressing risk issue, with the risk rating for cyber threats increasing by more than 11% over last year’s survey – by far the largest risk rating increase noted in the survey’s history. Dr. Mark Beasley, professor of Enterprise Risk Management, director of NC State’s ERM Initiative and co-author of the report, said, “While the economy is the top-ranked risk for the coming year, cyber threats jumped to the top of the list when leaders assessed both near- and long-term outlooks, after not being a top-five risk at all last year. This jump reflects the growing recognition of the complex cyber risk landscape that is impacted by the exponential curve of technological advances and how seriously leaders are taking these threats.”

“Over the next decade, technologies such as artificial intelligence, cloud, and the anticipated emergence of quantum computing will change how organizations secure their data, raising significant security-related questions,” said Sameer Ansari, Protiviti global Security & Privacy lead. “To adapt quickly to new technologies, many organizations are increasing reliance on outsourcing and co-sourcing arrangements to achieve operational and go-to-market objectives.  Additional risks arise as organizations must ensure their third-party partners, are complying with current laws and regulations to ensure their data and their customers’ data is secure.”

How Companies Can Take Action
No matter the time horizon, this year’s survey results highlight important steps executives should take to protect their companies against risk and maximize their chances of future success. The report from Protiviti and NC State’s ERM Initiative outlines the next steps that executives should take to address key areas of concern, including:

  1. Navigating an uncertain economic environment
  2. The cyber issues executives should be thinking about
  3. Forging ahead with artificial intelligence capabilities
  4. Embracing new talent strategies
  5. Understanding and managing the geopolitical risk landscape

Resources Available
The “Executive Perspectives on Top Risks for 2024 and a Decade Later” report from Protiviti and NC State University’s ERM Initiative provides detailed results and analysis broken out by company type, size, industry, geographic region and respondent role. The report, along with a global webinar series, an infographic, and a podcast about the survey results, is available for complimentary download here. Protiviti’s global webinar series kicks off with a one-hour panel discussion hosted by Protiviti’s Matthew Moore and featuring executives from Protiviti, MacroPolicy Perspectives, and Prudential Financial to discuss the implications of the survey’s findings on January 11, 2024 at 11pm ET. Attendance is free with registration here

About Protiviti

Protiviti (www.protiviti.com) is a global consulting firm that delivers deep expertise, objective insights, a tailored approach and unparalleled collaboration to help leaders confidently face the future. Protiviti and our independent and locally owned Member Firms provide clients with consulting and managed solutions in finance, technology, operations, data, analytics, digital, legal, HR, governance, risk and internal audit through our network of more than 85 offices in over 25 countries.

Named to the 2023 Fortune 100 Best Companies to Work For® list, Protiviti has served more than 80 percent of Fortune 100 and nearly 80 percent of Fortune 500 companies. The firm also works with smaller, growing companies, including those looking to go public, as well as with government agencies. Protiviti is a wholly owned subsidiary of Robert Half Inc. (NYSE: RHI). Founded in 1948, Robert Half is a member of the S&P 500 index.

About North Carolina State University’s Enterprise Risk Management (ERM) Initiative

The Enterprise Risk Management (ERM) Initiative in the Poole College of Management at North Carolina State University provides thought leadership about ERM practices and their integration with strategy and corporate governance. Faculty in the ERM Initiative frequently work with boards of directors and senior management teams helping them link ERM to strategy and governance, host executive workshops and educational training sessions, and issue research and thought papers on practical approaches to implementing more effective risk oversight techniques (www.erm.ncsu.edu).

Protiviti is not licensed or registered as a public accounting firm and does not issue opinions on financial statements or offer attestation services.

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Sinotruk leaping forward to become world-class technology enterprise

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JINAN, China, March 2, 2024 /PRNewswire/ — On March 2, SinoTruk’s Science and Technology Innovation Award Annual Conference 2024 was grandly held, to recognize and rewarding major scientific and technological achievements and outstanding innovative talents since 2022, planning and deploying scientific and technological innovation work ahead. Tan Xuguang, Chairman and General Manager of Shandong Heavy Industry Group, Chairman of China National Heavy Duty Truck Group, attended the conference and delivered a report on scientific and technological innovative work – “Steadily stride forward, embracing change in science and technology”.

 

Over the past five years, Sinotruk has invested nearly RMB 15 billion in R&D, which is the sum of the previous 15 years. It has benchmarked against world-class standards and gradually established a full-process independent research and development system. Sinotruk technological strength has reached the forefront of the national industry. Sinotruk has reshaped the “Yellow River” heavy-duty trucks standard with technology, ranking first in China, and its high-tech indicators are leading the industry. The market share of heavy-duty trucks has increased from 16.5% in 2018 to 26% in 2023, ranking first in China for two consecutive years. In 2023, the export volume exceeded 130,000 vehicles for the very first time, a 2.6-fold increase compared to 5 years ago, making it the largest single-brand global export volume in the world.

Tan Xuguang called on all engineers to keep in mind their mission, be down-to-earth, persistent in innovation, and make long-term achievements through dedicated ten years of hard work. Learn from the global cooperation, grow and become talents through project training, and achieve through continuous value creation. Achieve your meaning in life, strive with vitality and passion while you are young. Let’s set off again for a better future for the century heavy truck industry and the world’s best heavy truck industry!

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Flash News: OKX Introduces Exclusive ‘Babylon Pioneer Pass Event’ in Collaboration with Babylon, Offering Free Pioneer Pass NFT Minting for the First 100,000 Users Who Stake on Babylon Testnet

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SINGAPORE, March 2, 2024 /PRNewswire/ — OKX, a leading Web3 technology company, has issued updates for March 2, 2024.

OKX Introduces Exclusive ‘Babylon Pioneer Pass Event’ in Collaboration with Babylon, Offering Free Pioneer Pass NFT Minting for the First 100,000 Users Who Stake on Babylon Testnet

OKX today announced the launch of its ‘Babylon Pioneer Pass Event,’ giving users who access the Babylon Testnet and stake any amount of Signet Bitcoin (sBTC) the opportunity to claim Babylon’s Bitcoin Pioneer Pass NFT. To qualify for a spot, users must access the Babylon Testnet and stake any amount of Signet Bitcoin (sBTC).

The event kicks off on February 28 and continues until March 6. Following the event, starting from March 7, participants who have been whitelisted will have the ability to mint their Bitcoin Pioneer Pass NFT using the OKX Wallet and their whitelisted address.

The process of participating in this event is straightforward and involves the following steps:

  1. Firstly, users will need to prepare by setting up their OKX and Keplr Wallets. These wallets will be crucial for interacting with the Babylon Testnet and the subsequent claiming of sBTC and BBN.
  2. Following the wallet setup, users can then claim the sBTC and BBN on Babylon’s Official Discord. These tokens will be needed for staking in the Babylon Testnet.
  3. Finally, users will need to access Babylon’s official website, where users can actively engage, stake their tokens and claim their whitelist spots.

Participation in the event offers a multitude of benefits. Users can engage actively with the Babylon Testnet, which in turn enhances their understanding of the Babylon protocol and its functionalities. Furthermore, participants contribute to the development and evolution of the Babylon protocol by being active users.

The ‘Babylon Pioneer Pass Event‘ is a result of OKX’s partnership with Babylon, a trustless Bitcoin staking protocol. The Bitcoin Pioneer Pass, Babylon’s first commemorative Non-Fungible Token (NFT), is a highlight of this event, representing a significant milestone for both OKX and Babylon.

For more information, please visit the OKX Support Center.

About OKX

A leading global technology company driving the future of Web3, OKX provides a comprehensive suite of products to meet the needs of beginners and experts alike, including:

  • OKX Wallet: The world’s most powerful, secure and versatile crypto wallet which gives users access to over 80 blockchains while allowing them to take custody of their own funds. The wallet includes MPC technology which allows users to easily recover access to their wallet independently, removing the need for traditional, ‘written down’ seed phrases. In addition, OKX Wallet’s account abstraction-powered Smart Account enables users to pay for transactions on multiple blockchains using USDC or USDT, and interact with multiple contracts via a single transaction.
  • DEX: A multi-chain, cross-chain decentralized exchange aggregator of 300+ other DEXs and approximately 15 bridges, with 200,000+ coins and more than 20 blockchains supported.
  • NFT Marketplace: A multi-chain, zero-fee NFT marketplace that gives users access to NFT listings across seven top-tier marketplaces including OpenSea, MagicEden, LooksRare and Blur.
  • Web3 DeFi: A powerful DeFi platform that supports earning and staking on about 70 protocols across more than 10 chains.

OKX partners with a number of the world’s top brands and athletes, including English Premier League champions Manchester City F.C., McLaren Formula 1, The Tribeca Festival, Olympian Scotty James, and F1 driver Daniel Ricciardo.

As a leader building innovative technology products, OKX believes in challenging the status quo. The company recently launched a global brand campaign entitled, The System Needs a Rewrite, which advocates for a new paradigm led by Web3 self-managed technology.

To learn more about OKX, download our app or visit: okx.com

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UnionPay International and The Tourism Organisation of Serbia Sign MOU to Enhance Tourist Payments and Promote Serbia as a Premier Destination

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BELGRADE, Serbia, March 1, 2024 /PRNewswire/ — UnionPay International, the leading global card scheme, has entering into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with The Tourism Organisation of Serbia (TOS). This strategic partnership aims to enhancing the payment experience for tourists and to further facilitate tourism growth in Serbia.

The MOU signing ceremony took place at Belgrade on 27th February 2024, marking the beginning of a collaborative effort between UnionPay International and TOS. The agreement outlines various areas of cooperation:

Jointly promoting Serbia as Travel Destination: Through optimised marketing resources, both parties aim to promote Serbia as tourist destination among UnionPay cardholders, with its rich cultural heritage and unique experiences, provide comprehensive tourism information and payment guides for the tourists visiting Serbia. UnionPay International aims to provide more diversified and convenient payment choices, and ensuring seamless payment experiences for travellers visiting the country.

Privileges and Benefits: The partnership will explore opportunities for preferential activities that bring additional benefits to UnionPay cardholders visiting Serbia. This approach aims to boost the attractiveness of the local tourism market and create a win-win situation for both parties.

Ms Bomee Sheng, Product Director of UnionPay International, expressed her enthusiasm about the collaboration, stating, “We are delighted to partner with The Tourism Organisation of Serbia to promote tourism and facilitate payment experiences in Serbia. Through this partnership, we aim to provide UnionPay cardholders with enhanced convenience and benefits, ultimately contributing to the growth of Serbia’s tourism industry.”

Ms Marija Labović, CEO of National Tourism Organisation of Serbia, commented, “This partnership with UnionPay International comes at an important time as we strive to become the most popular all year destination in the region.” She outlines Belgrade’s popularity and the diversity of attractions from city breaks to natural retreats and she is looking forward to the Expo 2027 in the capital, “By leveraging UnionPay’s global network and advanced payment solutions, we are confident that we can attract more visitors to Serbia and provide them with memorable experiences.”

In recent years, Serbia has emerged as one of the most attractive destinations for Chinese visitors. It is hailed as the “heart of the Balkans” and offers a unique blend of captivating landscapes and rich cultural heritage. Its visa-free entry policy, coupled with the exceptional acceptance coverage of UnionPay cards, has played a significant role in attracting Chinese tourists. With over 90% of local merchants and ATMs supporting UnionPay payments and withdrawals, travellers can enjoy seamless payment experiences across various sectors, including retail, dining, hotels, gas stations, toll stations, and tourist attractions.

About The Tourism Organisation of Serbia (TOS)

The Tourism Organisation of Serbia (TOS) was formed under the Law on Tourism of 1994 as the institution in charge of promoting Serbian tourism in domestic and foreign markets, as well as performing other duties relevant for the development of communication and advertising activities in Serbian tourism. The activities of TOS are focused on positioning Serbia’s tourism products in domestic and foreign markets and exploring Serbia’s comparative advantages in terms of tourism, including its geostrategic position and its historical, cultural and natural identity.

About UnionPay International

UnionPay International focuses on the international business of UnionPay, a global payment network that serves the world’s largest cardholder base. Collaborating with over 2,600 partners globally, UnionPay acceptance now reached to 183 countries and regions. Outside the Chinese Mainland, UnionPay is accepted at nearly 67 million merchants and 1.7 million ATMs.

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