With majority of APAC companies expecting a crisis to occur in the next year, it is alarming that few have a crisis management plan in place. 

Crisis management – like that dreaded dental appointment, every business knows they should have one, but many companies are reluctant to invest resources into developing and maintaining an effective crisis management plan. Whether it’s being blindly optimistic or avoiding the inevitable, the results from the Digital Crisis Communications Study released by global PR firm Burson-Marsteller (BM)suggests that companies in the Asia-Pacific region should look into establishing one soon.

The result found that 67% of business decision-makers surveyed had experienced a crisis in the last year, with product safety issues being the predominant source. In the coming year, 53% expect to have a product safety crisis, and they are blaming social media for driving up the cost of crisis.

70% also believe that the rise of digital communications has increased their company’s vulnerability to crisis, and 66% feel that new media has significant increased the costs of a crsis.

However, on the flip side, 58% also believe that new media has made it easier to recover from a crisis as well.

Bob Pickard, BM’s chief executive for Asia-Pacific said: “With so many senior business leaders predicting a crsis with digital dimensions for their company and admitting their current lack of readiness, there is an urgent need for organisations in Asia to protect themselves by putting into place a modern crisis communications infrastructure”.

With 75% of the surveyed admitting to creating a crisis communication plan only after experiencing a crisis, Pickard advised: “Social technology creates the power to make any local crisis explode onto the global stage, so every company needs to know what to do when things go wrong and this can only be achieved through planning and simulation before incidents occur.”

The study also found that companies found preparing for a crisis difficult because of the need to respond quickly, increased public demand for transparency, and the globalized nature of communications.

 

 

Belle Kwan
BY Belle Kwan ON 5 August 2011
Assistant editor, Marketing magazine & marketingmag.com.au
A marketer's dream who believes everything she sees on TV.
Advertising is not evil, it is an artform and a science.