Technology, Media and Telecommunications Risk Index 2016

50 risks, split into five megatrends, ranked by 350 senior executives

May 23, 2016

The TMT Risk Index analyses the severity of impact and ease of management of the top 50 risks facing the TMT industry. Grouped into five megatrends, we examine how these are impacting the sector currently and how this will change in the future.

The research is based on quantitative and qualitative interviews with some of the world’s leading TMT companies around the world, revealing the short and long term risks that will shape the industry over the next ten years. The research also dives deeper into each individual sector (Technology, Media and Telecommunications) and further into sub-sector analysis, and drills down to a regional level, examining 11 geographies individually.


  • The top three risks are associated with the regulation and legal risks megatrend: data protection fines and penalties (first), intellectual property and patent infringement (second), competition and antitrust law scrutiny (third).
  • In a sector where innovation is key and change a constant, the threat from new and emerging competitors is ranked highly (sixth).
  • External threats, including cyberattacks (fourth) and piracy (10th) stand out as concerns.
  • Perhaps surprisingly, the risks posed by the global talent and skills race are not the greatest concern for TMT C-suites. However, companies expect challenges around talent to increase, especially over the long term.

Megatrend descriptors

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Regulatory Change and Legal Risk

Regulatory uncertainty arising from the explosion of the data economy, active anti-trust law and unpredictable political cycles are impinging on TMT organizations. Business strategies, commercial arrangements and day-to-day operational decisions are all impacted.

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Operational Complexity and Vulnerability

The global marketplace is having a profound effect on the operations of TMT companies, lengthening supply chains and precipitating greater operational complexity. Exposure to global and regional events, both natural and socio-political, threaten infrastructure, human resources and operational security.


Global Talent and Skills Race

A growing shortage of skills and talent across the TMT sector is making attraction and retention of key people a critical success factor. Simultaneously, the pressures created by employment regulation and demographic change are reshaping talent management.

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Business Model and Strategy Pressures

The pressure to stay relevant in the TMT sector demands a continuous output of innovation and diversification. The threat from nimble market entrants and an evolving demand profile is driving firms to not only innovate, but reassess their operational structures and business models.

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Digital Vulnerability and Rapid Technology Advancement

Irresistible technological progress and escalating consumer expectations are forcing heavy investment in IT infrastructure, process and strategies. This expenditure is felt no more acutely in the management and protection of data, which is simultaneously becoming TMT firms’ greatest asset and vulnerability.

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