Ireland and the UK lagging other markets, finds Organisation Resilience Index

Michael Bailey, director, BSI

Business leaders are struggling to adapt to new technologies amid political and economic uncertainty

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28 November 2019 | 0

Ireland and the UK are lagging other markets, according to the third annual Organisational Resilience Index report. Published by BSI, the report surveyed 800 senior leaders across the globe.

While most organisations involved saw their financial performances improve over the last 12 months, Ireland, the UK and Japan fell behind other markets. In fact, 14% of businesses in Ireland and the UK and 23% in Japan are performing financially worse than five years ago. This is at least twice the proportion of any other market.

Adaptive capacity

The report named adaptive capacity the most important factor for maintaining organisational resilience. It said that the disruptive effects of technology and changes to government policies and regulation are the driving forces behind the adaptive capacity agenda.  

Those surveyed identified technology as both the greatest opportunity and most severe threat to their success.

It also found that while innovation, horizon scanning, and adaptive capacity have the greatest impact on organisational resilience, relative performance in these areas has declined year-on-year.

Michael Bailey, director, BSI, said: “While we have seen a changing emphasis in organisational resilience in the past, this year reveals a decline in organisations’ ability to adapt to change.

“In order to survive and prosper, business leaders must be aware of issues on the horizon and remain vigilant in ensuring that they, along with their teams, are focused on strategic priorities. In balancing short-term business results with long-term resilience, businesses can use this year’s uncertainty as a springboard to future success.”

There has been a shift in the most valuable skills for a business leader to possess. Financial management is no longer seen to be the most important skill; staff engagement and recruitment came out on top, followed by clear direction, business performance and leadership skills.

Further, business leaders’ confidence in the resilience of their organisation has faltered for the first time since 2017.

Concerns over employee turnover have grown by 5% year-on-year, and staff engagement is one of the lowest performing elements. To combat this, businesses are placing ethics and sustainability at the core of their HR strategies to appeal to millennial and generation Z workers.

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