Risk appetite is a widely accepted concept that remains difficult to apply in practice. As discussed in Protiviti’s Early Mover Series, reasons for this abound. Protiviti financial services industry (FSI) experts and risk leaders worldwide have been engaging in risk appetite strategy discussions with industry leaders over the course of many months — defining, implementing and utilizing risk appetite. Each of these thought leaders has an average of 20 years of FSI expertise. Their insight, gained through their ongoing conversations and involvement with financial institutions, regulators and practitioners, forms the basis of this white paper.
In the pages that follow, we address a commonly voiced concern: the inability to implement an effective, enterprisewide risk appetite framework (RAF) due to the difficulty of translating broad, high-level risk objectives into clear, understandable guidelines and metrics for business units and operations personnel. Our view in discussing an optimized risk appetite process and framework is based on leading practices in risk management.