Artificial Intelligence & Project Management: Beyond human imagination!

12. April 2018 – An event by PMI Switzerland Chapter and PwC Switzerland

Around 200 years ago the industrial revolution changed society for good. Today, another revolution is under way, with potentially even farther-reaching consequences.

Experts are predicting that Artificial intelligence (AI) in industry will change everything about the way we produce, manufacture and deliver. Cognitive computing, machine learning, natural language processing: these different terms have emerged as the technology has progressed in recent years.

What they all encapsulate is the idea that machines could one day be taught to learn how to adapt by themselves, rather than having to be spoon-fed every instruction for every eventuality. Now, according to many, that day has arrived. AI will change the world.

At this event, Marc Lahmann and Manuel Probst will show how AI is set to change project management practice. They’ll also be explaining how project managers can prepare themselves to stay relevant in a fully integrated, automated and predictive project management world.

Agenda –  12 April, 2018
18:00 Registration
18.30 Presentation
19:30 Q&A
20:00 Networking Apéro

Event Language: English

Professional Development Units: 2
– Leadership
– Strategic & Business Management
– Technical Project Management

Please be aware that at the event photos of the audience are made and published on the PMI Switzerland homepage as well as on Facebook. The event may also be live broadcasted over Facebook. With your attendance you accept these conditions.

Event fee discounts: If your are PMI-CH member, please log in with your PMI-CH member account at www.pmi-switzerland.ch and enter the event from there in order to benefit from the membership discount.

Cancellation policy: 100% refund is possible for a ticket if cancelled 5 days before the event.

Registration

Contacts

Marc Lahmann
Director and Leader Transformation Assurance
+41 58 792 27 99
marc.lahmann@ch.pwc.com

Manuel Probst
Senior Manager Transformation Assurance
+41 58 792 27 62
manuel.probst@ch.pwc.com

PwC’s 2018 Global Economic Crime and Fraud Survey: Should Swiss companies be worried?

PwC’s Global Economic Crime and Fraud Survey 2018 reveals that 49% of global and 39% of Swiss organisations experienced economic crime in the last 24 months.

Could this mean that the problem is diminishing? Or are Swiss organisations simply not aware they have already fallen victim to economic crime?

In this blog post we will be examining the true nature of the threat and exploring whether companies be taking smarter measures to combat economic crime.

Does an apparent decline in fraud reflect the true story?
Despite a number of recent high profile fraud cases globally, PwC’s Global Economic Crime Survey suggests that the problem isn’t proliferating in Switzerland. The percentage of Swiss organisations who have experienced fraud in the last two years has decreased from 41% in 2016 to 39% in 2018. This figure looks even more positive when compared with the global (49%) or western European (45%) results. But is the result really that good?

We believe it isn’t. The survey data reveals some disconcerting facts.

Bribery and corruption are increasingly on the radar. In 2018, 27% of the Swiss respondents reported that they had been asked to pay a bribe, up from 9% in 2016. One in five respondents (20%) believe that their firms lost an opportunity to a competitor who paid a bribe within the last 24 months, up from 11% in 2016. While this shows growing awareness of, and confidence in acknowledging bribery and corruption, it also suggests that companies have to become even more alert to the threat of the problem and its implications in terms of competitiveness.

Secondly, the mean direct loss attributable to each incident of fraud in Switzerland was almost CHF 10 million – more than five times the global figure. While this may be due in part to the size of the Swiss economy and the prominence of banking and financial services sector– a particularly attractive target for fraudsters – it demonstrates that this is not a trivial problem. The size of monetary damage is significant.

Fighting fraud blindfold, or with eyes wide open?
While the lower fraud level reported in Switzerland may be due to an effective legal framework and law enforcement system, it could also reflect a temptation for organisations to overestimate the effectiveness of their systems and controls. Only one in three (33%) Swiss respondents performed a general fraud risk assessment over the two-year survey period which is substantially less than respondents globally (54%). Against this backdrop there’s a considerable risk that economic crime will go unnoticed and unreported, especially if an organisation doesn’t have access to management reporting concerning fraud.

Fraudsters down but not out, and moving quickly with the times
Swiss respondents reported that asset misappropriation (51%) and cybercrime (44%) were the two most common types of fraud experienced by their organisation with the latter also being perceived as a significant threat in the future. In order to be adequately prepared, organisations need to keep track of changes in the overall fraud risk landscape and the fact that Swiss respondents recognise cybercrime as the most significant risk going forward is encouraging.

However, our survey – both globally and in Switzerland – suggests that there’s still a failure to recognise the true nature of the threat, especially with growing business and consumer digitisation, the increasing sophistication of attacks, and heightened data security expectations amongst stakeholders. As the latest digital technologies help fraudsters become more strategic in their goals and more sophisticated in their methods, companies urgently have to make cybersecurity – the mitigation of cybercrime – a boardroom priority.

Unlike other types of fraud, cybercrime is a means to commit other types of fraud rather than being a stand-alone offence. Three in ten Swiss respondents suffered disruption to their business processes after having been the victim of a cyber-attack. More than a quarter of Swiss respondents (28%) were a victim of extortion and more than a fifth (23%) reported that a cyber-attack was used as a conduit to commit asset misappropriation against their organisation.

Efforts have to be more intelligent and better coordinated
While the 2018 survey shows that Swiss firms are taking cybercrime seriously, it also suggests that they need to work harder to be in line with global standards. Best practice organisations have adopted a ‘three lines of defence’ model, dividing responsibilities between functions that own and manage risk, those that oversee or specialise in risk management and those that provide independent assurance. It’s important to ensure that each of these functions also adequately addresses cyber risks.

In reality, only 54% of Swiss respondents have an operational cybersecurity programme, 5% below the global average and 7% below the average for Western Europe. Overall the global survey reveals serious blind spots when it comes to recognising the specific risks of fraud and economic crime. The trick is to recognise these blind spots before any fraud incident takes place. While it’s encouraging that 92% of Swiss firms expect to either significantly increase (6%), increase (25%) or maintain (61%) the amount of funds used to combat fraud, the issue is more about how these funds are actually spent. Presently, the stumbling block is often a lack of coordination and a failure to see the big picture.

The areas of a business that investigate fraud, manage fraud risks and report to the board or regulators are often disjointed and siloed. If each department builds a programme based on their own perception of fraud, operational gaps will eventually arise. So it’s vital to ensure all stakeholders understand the big picture of fraud risk management and how their own function fits into it. For global companies, establishing a centralised fraud detection and investigation function is a very good starting point.

And for any organisation, we can suggest four golden rules of effective fraud prevention:

Instant takeaway: four steps to fight fraud

  • Recognise fraud when you see it
  • Take a dynamic approach
  • Harness technology
  • Invest in people, not just machines

Follow these rules of thumb and you’ve already increased your chances of navigating an increasingly complex economic crime landscape. If you want to find out more, check out PwC’s Global Economic Crime and Fraud Survey 2018, and the deep dive into the Swiss findings ((link)), or contact us for a more in-depth conversation about how to tackle fraud and economic crime.

A look back at the PMI event: Creating high-performing teams for your projects, February 8

Lively exchange, interesting topics and inspiring conversations at the event held by the Project Management Institute (PMI) and PwC Switzerland

Human capital research has given us some interesting insights over the last 30 years. Did you know, for example, that undermined motivation probably has a larger effect on productivity and quality than any other factor? And that after motivation, probably the largest influencer of productivity is the individual capabilities of members of a team or the working relationships among them? These and other facts have been discussed yesterday at the event on the subject “Creating high-performing teams for your projects”.

The interactive presentation has drawn on experience with building high-performing teams for IT projects, nationally and internationally. Attendees got insights into how to build teams that make the grade, what roles need to be included, and what factors influence behaviour and motivation.

We would like to say thank you to all attendees, colleagues, PMI and especially to our speaker Maarten Broekhuizen, senior manager in the Transformation Assurance division at PwC Netherlands, and would be delighted to have the pleasure of your company again soon.

About the next event: Artificial Intelligence & Project Management: Beyond human imagination!

Around 200 years ago the industrial revolution changed society for good. Today another revolution is under way, with potentially even farther-reaching consequences.

Artificial intelligence (AI) in industry, experts are predicting, will change everything about the way we produce, manufacture and deliver. Cognitive computing, machine learning, natural language processing – different terms have emerged as the technology has progressed in recent years. What they all encapsulate is the idea that machines could one day be taught to learn how to adapt by themselves, rather than having to be spoon-fed every instruction for every eventuality. Now, according to many, that day has arrived. AI will change the world.

Date: Thursday, April 12, 2018 from 6:00 PM to 9:30 PM (CEST)
Location: Geneva, Switzerland.

Registration

Contact

Marc Lahmann
Director and Leader Transformation Assurance
+41 58 792 27 99
marc.lahmann@ch.pwc.com

Manuel Probst
Senior Manager Transformation Assurance
+41 58 792 27 62
manuel.probst@ch.pwc.com

 

Creating high-performing teams for your projects

An event by PMI Switzerland Chapter and PwC Switzerland

Human capital research has given us some interesting insights over the last 30 years. Did you know, for example, that undermined motivation probably has a larger effect on productivity and quality than any other factor? And that after motivation, probably the largest influencer of productivity is the individual capabilities of members of a team or the working relationships among them?

This interactive presentation draws on experience with building high-performing teams for IT projects, nationally and internationally. You’ll get insights into how to build teams that make the grade, what roles need to be included, and what factors influence behaviour and motivation. And you’ll find out what happiness and grit could possibly have to do with the success of a project.

About our speaker:

Maarten Broekhuizen is a senior manager in the Transformation Assurance division at PwC Netherlands. He has more than 10 years’ experience in advising firms on IT and business transformation challenges and troubled projects in the Netherlands, Europe, the US and South America. Maarten has a master’s in business administration and information management. One of the questions that has run through his career has been why some project teams are more successful than others. He looks forward to sharing his experience helping you create your own high-performing team for your project(s).

Agenda

  • 18:00 Registration
  • 18.30 Presentation
  • 19:30 Q&A
  • 20:00 Networking Apéro

Event Language: English

Professional Development Units: 2

  • 0.5 Leadership
  • 1.0 Strategic & Business Management
  • 0.5 Technical Project Management

Please be aware that at the event photos of the audience are made and published on the PMI Switzerland Chapter homepage as well as on Facebook. The event may also be live broadcasted over Facebook. With your attendance you accept these conditions.

Event fee discounts
If your are PMI-CH member, please log in with your PMI-CH member account at www.pmi-switzerland.ch and enter the event from there in order to benefit from the membership discount.

Cancellation policy
100% refund is possible for a ticket if cancelled 5 days before the event.

Registration

Contact

Marc Lahmann
Director and Leader Transformation Assurance
+41 58 792 27 99
marc.lahmann@ch.pwc.com

Manuel Probst
Senior Manager Transformation Assurance
+41 58 792 27 62
manuel.probst@ch.pwc.com

 

Rescuing struggling projects

When managing the project recovery process it’s crucial to avoid taking action for action’s sake, treating the situation as a fire drill, or only addressing the superficial symptoms rather than the real underlying issues. You have to take a structured approach, starting with stabilising the project on the basis of the visible symptoms, and going on to do an in-depth root cause analysis as the basis for defining a recovery plan. This will help the project move beyond mere survival to achieve a sustainable solution in the long term.

Move beyond mere survival to find a sustainable path to recovery

Businesses today are facing challenges like never before which is driving an increased demand for transformation projects, each one more complex than the last. Over half of projects fail completely or exceed their budget significantly. It is no longer about if a project struggles, but when. Is your project is in trouble? What will it take to rescue it for the long-term? Read more …

Contact

Marc Lahmann
Director and Leader Transformation Assurance
+41 58 792 27 99
marc.lahmann@ch.pwc.com

Manuel Probst
Assurance Senior Manager
+41 58 792 27 62
manuel.probst@ch.pwc.com

Get on the safe side: train your hotel staff to prevent payment card fraud

Any company can be targeted by payment card fraud. Luckily, there are effective ways of substantially reducing the risk. Most incidents have a common denominator: human behaviour. So the most effective action you can take to reduce the risk is training your staff in best practice.

This has prompted us to team up with Lobster Ink, the leading online education company specialising in the hospitality industry, to develop an online training course in PCI DSS Awareness for the hospitality industry. It’s a highly focused programme for end-users that will help your staff understand and apply the principles of PCI compliance.

Payment card fraud is a massive and growing problem that needs to be addressed as a matter of urgency. The consequences for the businesses affected are severe, ranging from penalties and disruption of daily operations to reputation damage and lost customers.

The scale of the problem is also extreme: payment card fraud resulted in losses of USD 21.8 billion in 2015, and a Nilson Report predicts that this will rise to more than USD 31 billion by 2020. Verizon’s ten year Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) compliance investigation has shown that no company was fully PCI DSS compliant at the time of the breach.

As the pace of technological development accelerates, especially in
payment systems, the risk of security breaches is higher than ever.

How can you protect your business?

With PwC’s expertise in cybercrime and compliance and Lobster Ink’s experience in innovative training, your staff will soon be up to speed with best practices. We’ve designed individual courses for customer-facing staff, back-of-house staff and management to ensure every employee is aware of the risks and mitigating actions relevant to their particular level and department.

The course will help you and your employees to identify and minimise the risks associated with handling sensitive payment card data. They’ll also learn about best practice for reducing risk to acceptable levels and systematically protecting your customer’s data.

Your employees are the first line of defence. Get them trained today!

Contact us to find out more about PCI DSS Awareness:

Nicolas Mayer
PwC Partner & Global Industry Leader
Lodging & Tourism Clients
E-mail: nicolas.mayer@ch.pwc.com

or via

Lobster Ink

“Many people aren’t aware of the risks of using credit cards. This course was so useful for all of us – to protect our guests and ourselves.” – existing PCI DSS learner

Uncharted waters: Tackling reinsurers’ riskiest exposures

There are no tried and tested strategies for dealing with the banana
skins that have shot to the top of reinsurers’ risk registers – cyber
risk, change management and political upheaval. How can you get
to grips with these highly unpredictable and disruptive exposures?

Insurance Banana Skins is a unique survey of the issues at the top of the industry’s risk register and how these perceptions change over time. The
biennial report is produced by the The Centre for the Study of Financial Innovation (CFSI) in association with PwC.

What’s most striking about the latest set of results is how far and how fast the risk landscape is shifting. Having for many years been dominated by the familiar headaches of solvency regulation and a challenging market environment, the risks that now cause the most sleepless nights are rooted in the shock and uncertainty of the new.

At number one is cyber risk, reflecting both the anxieties of underwriting a risk that’s constantly shifting and the rising threat to reinsurers themselves. Far from being just a technology risk, cyber is now a huge reputational and systemic concern. At number two is the industry’s ability to address a formidable agenda of new technology and shifting customer and conduct expectations, along with the associated pressure on service, performance and costs. Signs of the upheaval are all around us, from new forms of underwriting and risk transfer, to increased automation and inroads from InsurTech right along the value chain. And even more disruption is coming up on the horizon in areas ranging from artificial intelligence (AI) to driverless cars.

We also focus on what the Banana Skins survey describes as ‘political interference’ on account of its rapid rise up the risk rankings and particular relevance to prominent reinsurance centres, notably the UK and Bermuda. As a global industry, reinsurance faces considerable challenges from the political developments, changes in trading arrangements and the shift towards more nationalistic rather than global approaches. Our analysis of the implications looks in particular at the implications of Brexit and an uncertain US tax agenda.

Download Full Report

PwC Actuarial Services Newsletter – August 2017

The pace of change in the Financial Services industry is accelerating. New products and services are being developed and emerging technologies, such as Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Internet of Things (IoT) evolve the way of doing business.

Key points in brief:

  • Article #1: Data driven KYC
  • Article #2: Machine learning and text mining
  • Article #3: Smart Price Architecture


Download the PwC Actuarial Services Newsletter here.

PwC’s guide to making your controls landscape more effective and efficient front to back

Within the financial services industry, one of the conventional wisdoms since the global financial crisis goes like this: Regulators imposed new regulations that forced financial institutions to introduce policies, controls and other risk-management-related activities to minimise risk and be compliant. Having lived through a few of these major exercises ourselves, we know first-hand how dominant this topic has been in the past. Financial institutions instantly responded to every new regulatory requirement or major industry incident by layering on yet more controls, policies, governance and other rules – without considering the impact across the business or what was already in place.

Internal controls became the critical component of risk and regulatory projects and a major investment in themselves. Budgets were allocated generously and transferred from strategy- and business-related projects.

These days, the same institutions are going through tough cost-cutting exercises touching all aspects of the bank and its business, with risk and compliance no longer exempt. Improving the efficiency and effectiveness of controls without increasing the risk profile is now one of the greatest challenges and opportunities a financial institution has to face. The key to success is to respond to escalating regulatory demands wisely by optimising the necessary controls while reducing or at least containing costs.

The first hurdle to overcome when addressing this topic is a reticence when it comes to reducing or re-engineering control activities. Despite the high pressure to reduce the cost of controls, the cost of non-compliance is still prohibitively high in many cases. A key success factor to any control streamlining exercise is to demonstrate that you’re able to do so safely and within your risk appetite. We recommend opening the narrow focus of a division or risk taxonomy and concentrating on a broader front-to-back view of controls. The goal is to establish an efficient separation of duties, determine and invest internal control resources in top priority issues, and increase reliance on automated and system-supported controls.

We encourage everyone to dive deep into the topic right now, starting by asking…

Some key questions related to controls:

  • Does your control landscape reflect your current risk appetite?
  • How can the effectiveness and efficiency of controls be measured and made transparent?
  • Have you struck the right balance between preventive, detective and reactive controls?
  • Are there too many control layers?
  • Are controls performed by the right resources, functions and locations?
  • What controls-related activities can be automated or outsourced?

The drivers for a control review vary, but typically include improving client experience by shortening lead and lag times, and streamlining the effort that goes into controls-related activities in all parts of the organisation while remaining within risk appetite. The key is to determine the right balance between the cost of controls and the cost of being non-compliant − or in other words the cost of execution, monitoring and testing, and the frequency of events and their financial impact. The following four-step approach will give you some guidance once you’re ready to start improving your controls efficiency and effectiveness:

Objectively analyse and score the current state

The first step is to identify the controls that are currently in place and understand how they map to the underlying front-to-back process selected for review. This is not always easy, as many institutions organise their controls by other dimensions such as risk taxonomy or regulatory requirement. The controls identified are then assessed and scored based on their importance, efficiency and effectiveness. On the basis of this analysis you can identify the opportunities for improvement and state the case for change.

Design the future state and work out opportunities for improvement

One key aspect has to be considered before starting with the design: As soon as the various opportunities have been identified, the respective stakeholders should be involved to recognise the opportunities as such. Only once you have a common understanding of the opportunities does it make sense to start designing the future state and analysing the cost/benefit relation by including the current baseline and the expected benefits case. As a result, every opportunity gets its own ‘mini initiative business case’, to be considered when follow up decisions are made the opportunities are finally prioritised.

Define the necessary measures and activities

When preparing descriptions of the initiatives, you need to clearly define ownership and responsibilities right at the beginning. As every control streamlining initiative is a little project in itself, the underlying goals and KPIs for measuring the initiative’s success have to be confirmed by its owner. After this step, the activities and the corresponding timeline, as well as any change-management-related activities and communication, can be planned, and the immediate next steps initiated.

Implement the changes

Implementation should follow a roadmap that considers the prioritisation of activities and divides delivery into the short and medium term. Typically, a tight timeline will be chosen to ensure that any improvements in control efficiency and effectiveness are rapidly visible. Obviously you have to differentiate between mandatory changes or quick wins and more complex, long term improvements that contain technical adjustments or the automation of manual procedures.

Last but not least, there must be enough time to lead the people involved through the improvement- related transformation phase and ensure that they start acting according to the new standards and procedures.

In this kind of exercise it’s important to make sure that interests are aligned across divisions, the people affected are involved early on, and that everything is communicated properly. This way you’ll be able to generate demand, be in a position to replicate the approach, and establish a systematic and continuous process of improving controls efficiency and effectiveness.

Contact

Dr. Milena Danielsen
Advisory Director
+41 58 792 44 47
milena.danielsen@ch.pwc.com

Alexandra Burns
Assurance Director
+41 58 792 46 28

Are public projects doomed to failure from the start? – Transformation Assurance

Public projects have a bad reputation. Is it deserved, or more a matter of expectations and the way success and failure are defined? In this critical review we take a close look at what makes public-sector IT and transformation projects different from those in other areas, the specific challenges they face, and tried-and-tested approaches to making them a success. Read more…

Contact

Marc Lahmann
Director and Leader Transformation Assurance
+41 58 792 27 99
marc.lahmann@ch.pwc.com