Enterprise Risk Management (ERM)


Enterprise Risk Management (ERM) is embraced by higher education around the country and considered best practice.  Although there are assorted approaches, institutions commonly include it as a component of strategic and operational planning.  ERM identifies, assesses and manages potential enterprise risks in order to provide reasonable assurance of success in achieving the mission, vision and strategic goals of an institution.

ERM is part of Washington State’s Government Management, Accountability and Performance (GMAP) Initiative.  The Governor has declared that ERM is an agency best practice, and agencies should integrate it with strategic planning and decision-making processes.  Washington State agencies, including higher education, complete an ERM status report as part of the state’s budget process.


Integrating ERM

ERM can be integrated into existing strategic or operational planning processes to provide a wider perspective of enterprise risks, the potential barriers to achieving the mission, vision and strategic goals at an institutional, division and unit level. The goal is to add ERM value without creating a burdensome layer of administration.

ERM can be integrated into:

  • Strengths, Challenges, Opportunities and Threats (SCOT) Assessments, or similar strategic planning tools, to provide reasonable assurance of success in achieving the mission, vision and strategic goals at the institution, division and unit level. For example, SCOT provides a framework for identifying and assessing potential enterprise risks, described as Challenges or Threats, while ERM provides a framework for developing an appropriate response to those risks, such as avoidance, reduction, sharing or acceptance. 
  • New initiatives or emerging issues as part of the assessment and implementation of these plans, thereby improving their chance for success; and
  • Ongoing issues by applying an “ERM filter” to the planning process to see if their chances for success might be improved. 

Contact Risk Management, for assistance with integrating ERM.
Paul Mueller CPCU


Reference Documents

The following ERM key terms and concepts create understanding and a common language for the University community in an effort to streamline communication among stakeholders.


Other Resources

Page Updated 11.22.2017