Risk is the uncertainty in the future outcome of an action or event. Risks in life or business are bound to pop up in your path. And, it is not always wise to avoid risks.
Risk management is a control process that includes proactive recognition, scrutiny, and preparation of apt responses to risk elements that may appear (immediately or in the foreseeable future) in your business.
The primary goal of an organization's risk management function is to identify and quantify the risk of an action or event and to determine the best course of action to reduce the risk to an acceptable level.
If implemented properly, effective risk management should ideally reduce the probability of potential risks and their aftermaths to your business. And that is the reason companies tend to hire experts who have graduated from risk management courses.
The world of corporate finance is full of complexities. It seems like every decision you make will lead to an expected outcome. However, more often or not, there are surprises in store. With time, you start to notice the decisions and investment patterns. And with that, you would begin to understand the importance of risk management in corporate finance.
The role of risk management in finance is to identify and manage the risks associated with financial decisions and decisions related to finance. The primary role of risk management is to ensure that a firm's financial decisions are made in a way that is consistent with the firm's goals and objectives.
This generally involves identifying the risks associated with a decision or a decision related to finance, locating potential risks, and focussing on necessary actions to mitigate them. No wonder financial risk management courses are so in demand for corporate finance careers.
Why financial risk management is beneficial to a business
According to financial risk management courses, risk management is a series of steps, often iterative, involving identifying potential risk, measuring the risk, and implementing a plan to reduce the risk to an acceptable level.
Financial risk management is the process employed in organizations to prevent possible revenue leakage by managing any probable financial threats using an effective strategic plan. To manage financial risks, the respective managers have to anticipate business risks. Furthermore, they have to find possible remedies too.
Most such managers have risk management certifications from respectable institutes. There are also some reputable risk management courses online that are worth checking out.
Here are some benefits you can look forward to reaping from financial risk management:
1. Identifies risk exposure
Risk management certification programs explain that the first step in the risk management process is the identification of the risk exposure of an organization. An organization's financial risk management function is the primary mechanism through which the risks identified in the finance function are acted upon.
The primary responsibility of the financial risk management function is the measurement and classification of the financial risks the organization is exposed to and the measurement and classification of the risks that the organization is currently not exposed to.
The primary goal of the financial risk management function is to maximize the return on the financial assets of an organization while minimizing the risk of the financial assets.
2. Estimates risk exposure in figures
As per financial risk management courses, another primary goal of financial risk management is to estimate risks in figures for the organization. So that the management can set priorities while dealing with them.
To meet risk management goals, the finance department needs a systematic, methodical application of quantitative and qualitative risk-assessment tools and techniques.
It also needs a thorough understanding of risk measurement, prudent risk-management policies, and risk-control systems. Analysts use several strategies and tools like standard deviation to estimate a financial risk in numerical figures.
Some standard deviation tools exist that aid analysts in quantifying an organization's risk exposure to probable financial risks. For instance, Excel is a commonly used software that is used by small businesses for financial analysis.
3. Aids in risk mitigation
After obtaining the risk figures, you must act aptly and promptly. The important questions at this critical juncture are - can your business afford to take the risk? And if that is not possible, how could it best mitigate it?
Remember, you should proactively seek solutions to the risks before them transform into events. For these critical decisions, relevant data are a must. An apt risk management process would also provide the requisite data to smoothen your decision-making process.
4. Limits personal financial liability
This point is critical for sole proprietorships and SMBs as notably accentuated by risk management courses. How you legally structure your firm directly impacts your liability for your business's debts.
And, if it is not properly structured, creditors may be able to go after your assets to secure their debts in case of a sudden business loss/collapse.
Financial risk management allows you to save yourself from such disastrous situations. And, as a rule of thumb, you must not guarantee any personal debts irrespective of your business size.
5. Enables risk sharing
Risk management enables you to share risks, such as in the case of joint ventures. You may like to venture into a new lucrative vertical but lack the necessary expertise. Investing in such an enterprise solo may lead to trouble.
Hence, it would be wise of you to team up with a trustworthy and agile start-up that has the necessary talent and expertise to excel after due diligence via risk management.
Maybe you, with your stable and experienced enterprise, can aid them in other ways, such as marketing, advertisements, and sales, while focusing on core product development. It is a win-win situation for both of you. And it is also a prime example of how you can benefit from risk and expertise sharing.
6. Assists risk transfer
Risk transfer involves transferring risk from your business to a third party like insurance. Nowadays, all sorts of business insurance are available to protect your investment and business from losses.
Risk management enables you to pick the best insurance partner for your business. Some insurance providers also offer customized plans to suit your business requirements.
7. Turns losses into tax reliefs
No one would intentionally like to lose money in a business. However, losses are bound to happen sometimes. You may flip this disadvantage into an advantage with apt financial risk management.
For instance, proper planning can help you channel your incurred business losses (maybe due to investment or operations) into tax deductions.
Thus, you do not have to shell out the usual tax amount. You may even secure tax reliefs for multiple years if the losses are related to capital assets, such as stock market and real estate investment.
Similarly, proper financial risk management would predict upcoming revenue downturns and aid you in managing them better to secure related tax benefits.
8. Facilitates rapid recovery
Despite all readiness, it is always possible that due to some unforeseen crisis, something can go wrong. In case of such a business catastrophe, proper financial risk management can help you to recover and avoid bankruptcy.
With a proper risk management plan in place, you may have funds kept aside or apt insurance to tackle such sudden business disasters and avoid risking a business collapse.
Limitations of risk management
1. Insufficient data
For risk management to be effective, analysis is critical. And for analysis collecting relevant information in the form of locating and gathering data is essential. However, in case of data inadequacy, it would be tough to execute proper risk management analysis.
2. Lack of proper expertise
Sometimes it may be possible that a slight lack of expertise in risk management may lead to undesired outcomes despite sufficient data. Normally, risks have plenty of variables associated. Unless all are accounted for, the analysis can be shaky.
3. Unforeseen risks
There are sudden risks that are sometimes impossible to foresee. Hence, they go unnoticed. For example - the current Covid-19 pandemic failed many SMBs.
Skills needed for risk management jobs
1. Analytical skills
Analyzing risks is a prerequisite skill for a risk manager. A risk manager's job is to calculate the possible harmful effects of potential risks.
2. Problem-solving skills
The role of a risk manager does not end with risk analysis alone. But they also have to bear the responsibility of finding the remedies. A lot of strategies are involved in risk management.
With an amalgamation of thoroughness and creativity, a risk manager has to sketch risk management processes and solutions for the entire company.
3. Communication skills
Communication skills are an important asset for any risk manager. A risk manager's job is to ensure that everyone (including the operator to the director) understands the risks or how to avoid/remedy them.
4. Negotiation skills
To create a risk management policy or enforce it, a risk manager has to negotiate and convince executives in various departments to comply with the risk management policies.
Risk management is a vital part of modern-day corporate functioning. It has many benefits; however, there are a few limitations too.
If you are interested in risk management certification courses, the Hero Vired Certificate Program in Financial Analysis, Valuation & Risk Management is a comprehensive course that would help you train to meet the challenges of the dynamism of financial markets.
It is one of the best risk management certification courses and you will learn the nitty-gritty of theoretical and real-world financial concepts from accomplished faculty who have decades of experience in the industry.
Moreover, during this course, you will learn how to evaluate the financial outcomes of business decisions, business valuations, and investment costs, and become a well-rounded financial analysis and risk management professional.