Agenda item

Quarterly Risk Report

To inform the Committee of the current status of the Council’s strategic risks (report of the Executive Director for Strategy and Governance enclosed)


Consideration was given to the Executive Director Strategy and Governance which updated the Committee on the current status of the Council’s strategic risks.


The last risk report to the Governance and Audit Committee was in September 2015, and covered the position of strategic risks up to the end of Quarter 1 2015-16.  This followed a period where routine performance and risk reporting had been temporarily suspended to allow for the review of performance and risk frameworks and the implementation of a new corporate performance and risk monitoring system, known as Covalent.


The report being considered was the second risk report to be generated using the new system, and contained status updates on strategic risks for Quarter 2, 2015/16.  Future quarterly reports would also contain details of high scoring operational risks, which were still in the process of being implemented on the new Covalent system. 


Strategic risks had been reviewed and updated with responsible members of the Executive Management Team (EMT).  The strategic risk register included seven strategic risks (detailed at Appendix A to the report).  These covered the over-arching risks that could affect the strategic direction of the Council, rather than risks linked to business continuity or those that affected discreet service areas.  Currently, there were no strategic risks that were rated as high risks, and there were appropriate mitigations in place to ensure that these risks were appropriately managed.


Strategic risks were captured on the Corporate Dashboard, and reviewed by EMT quarterly.  In addition, risks were reviewed monthly at the officer-led Performance, Risk and Audit Board, chaired by the Executive Director Strategy and Governance.


Strategic Risks – These typically affected the whole of the organisation and not just one or more parts of it.  Strategic risks could potentially involve very high stakes and often affected the ability of the organisation to survive, e.g. impact on the ability of the Council to achieve its corporate plan objectives and purpose.  Strategic risks were managed at Board (EMT) level.


The Risk Framework was currently under review, alongside the implementation of the new ICT system.  As part of this review, the risk matrix had been changed from a 3 x 3 to a 5 x 5 matrix, based on best practice in comparable organisations.  This provided a more comprehensive assessment and understanding of risk likelihood and impact.  The matrix resulted in a numerical score which combined the impact of the risk occurring with the likelihood of it happening.  Risks fell into High, Medium or Low categories, depending on their rating.


The Committee was advised that the wording in some sections of the appendix had not been finalised and that it had been completed prior to the Chancellor’s recent autumn statement.  A revised version of the appendix would be circulated to members of the Committee.


The Committee considered the report and agreed that the report did seem easier to read than previous versions.




a)    That the report be noted; and


b)    That a revised version of the appendix be circulated to Committee members.

Supporting documents: