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Two Enterprise Risk Network conferences were held in 2016. The first was held on the 20 April in Dublin Castle, followed by the second on the 22 November in the National Botanic Gardens.

These conferences enable information sharing, distribution of guidance and discussion, consultation and meeting up with peers.

This year, approximately 200 people, representing 60 DSAs, attended. We received very positive feedback from those that attended. We will continue, as part of the Risk Management Network, to hold further events in 2017.

Spring/Summer Network Conference: “Insurance Requirements for Goods and Services Contracts

This conference focused on insurance, which is an issue that effects all aspects of DSA activities. The SCA Enterprise Risk Management Query Service receives in excess of 300 queries annually specifically on insurance requirements for Requests for Tenders (RFTs) and contracts. Our experience indicated that there was a lack of guidance on this topic both nationally and internationally and that this matter was further exacerbated by the various types of RFTs and contracts across the State sector; from the procurement of pens and paper to ships and helicopters. As the use of contractors is increasing, we saw this as an opportunity to provide practical examples on why DSAs need to have formal standardised procedures in place for setting and checking insurance together with a practical toolkit.

Risk presentations were provided by Fiona Kearns, Senior Enterprise Risk Manager and Paul Burke, Enterprise Risk Manager and; Louise Boughton, Senior Litigation Solicitor with the State Claims Agency provided an insight into insurance and its requirement from a litigation perspective using informative claims’ case studies.

The following State Indemnity Guidance (SIG) documents were launched at this Network Conference:

SIG 02: Determining insurance levels for goods & services RFTs & contracts

  • General insurance guidance
  • Appendix A: Types of insurance cover
  • Appendix B: Insurance risk assessment template
  • Appendix C: Insurance requirements for RFTs
  • Appendix D: Third party insurance questionnaire

SIG 03 – Use of Contractors

SIGs are available on request from


“I don’t have a background in insurance but I found the presentations very useful and the associated guidance very clear and helpful.”

“It was very interesting to hear about the impacts of accidents from a litigation perspective and why health and safety risk management is so important”.

Autumn/Winter Network Conference “Frequently Asked Questions”

This conference focused on a number of different topics, which were presented by experts from within and external to the State Claims Agency. The focus of the seminar was to provide clarity and guidance to some of the questions/queries raised during the year. The topics included:

  • National Incident Management System (NIMS) Functionality and Reporting Strategy
  • Enterprise Risk Management Initiatives
  • Managing Slip, Trips and Falls in Delegated State Authorities
  • National Contracts Frameworks to Support Risk, Insurance and Health and Safety Management in the Public Sector
  • Overview of the DSA Focus Groups

A joint presentation provided by Michael Sweeney, Programme Manager, SCA and Fiona Leheny, Data Services Manager, SCA outlined the development of NIMS, the key benefits of the system to process data in real time and the availability of a team of industry specialists within the SCA who can facilitate data requests.

Katie Nugent, Enterprise Risk Manager, provided an overview of two beneficial Enterprise Risk Management Initiatives which commenced in 2016 using the functionality of NIMS: Incident and Claim Risk Reviews and Quarterly Risk Status Reports. These initiatives shall not only assist the DSAs in reducing their risk exposure but also provide key management information in respect of claims and incident activity (see article in this eZine, Enterprise Risk Management Initiatives for further information). Tom O’Keeffe, Enterprise Risk Manager, followed with an insightful presentation to raise awareness amongst the audience of the risk associated with slips, trips and falls. The presentation outlined a number of practical control measures to assist DSAs with reducing the exposure to this risk, including the use of real examples from litigated cases.

Mila Sullivan, Procurement Manager, Office of Government Procurement (OGP)), was the first of two external speakers. She provided a depth of information on a number of National Framework Contracts to support the management of risk. These frameworks include:

  • External Workplace Investigation Services;
  • Foreign Travel Insurance; Employee Assistance Services;
  • Occupational Health Services Framework (to be available from Q2 2017);
  • Health and Safety Training & Advisory (to be available from Q1 2017).

The aim of these framework contracts is to deliver easy access to high-quality services for all Public Sector bodies, at the best possible price. Therefore, where a DSA requires any of the various services associated with the frameworks, there is no need to tender, saving time and ensuring compliance with procurement requirements – just contact the OGP for information on how to access the required framework contract.

Declan Garrett, Security and Safety Manager, National Gallery of Ireland, provided an insight into a collaborative risk initiative – DSA Focus Group. This project was undertaken by a sub-group of Network members, facilitated and coordinated by the SCA. The purpose of the group was to ensure that recommendations raised from inspections carried out by the Health and Safety Authority were being addressed so as to ensure compliance with the Safety, Health and Welfare at Work Act, 2005 and associated legislation. The feedback from this project was hugely positive and the guidance and templates can be obtained by contacting


“I found the Network Conference very informative with a nice mix of topics relative to my organisation. I found the presentations on NIMS particularly useful. As a newly Delegated Authority, it gave a good overview of how this system can be utilized and what’s up and coming. Also, it was a great opportunity to meet the ERMS team and to engage with other people within the health and safety and risk field.”

“Overall, I enjoyed the morning; it was great to get an opportunity to engage with people in similar roles within the public sector. I felt that there was a good flow to the presentations and the morning went by very fast. I found the presentation on slip trips and falls useful, in particular, the mapping tool, this is always an issue to contend with in our organisation.”

“The conference was a great opportunity to meet the SCA Risk personnel but also others fulfilling the same role as myself in the public sector. I would like more of these conferences, the morning wasn’t enough.”

“It’s great to hear that at last all of the good work that is being undertaken will get recognition through the awards initiative in 2017.”

Finally, the Enterprise Risk Management Section launched the following Risk Advisory Notices (RANs) at this Network Conference:

  • RA-07-01 – E-Working Policy Development
  • RA-08-01 – Noise and Vibration
  • RA-10-01 – Safety Data Sheets (SDS)
  • RA-11-01 – Asbestos Risk Management
  • RA-12-01 – A Guide to Portable Appliance Testing

RANs are available on request from

Article by: Elaine Byrne, Senior Enterprise Risk Manager, State Claims Agency

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