We publish best practice, guidance and research on a variety of risk related topics, ensuring our members are kept updated and informed.

Our guidance documents are available as a digital download and hard copies. You can update your communication preferences on your member dashboard or by contacting the ALARM team at


Spotlight on sustainability
November 2022

Making public service organisations sustainable and supporting sustainablilty in the communities they serve have become business imperatives, as well as moral and statutory obligations. This guide contains case studies from experienced practitioners from a council, a police service, a health trust and a university, on how their organisations have implemented sustainable principles, initiatives and products. Platinum Sponsors Kennedys and Zurich Municipal add their thoughts and knowledge to provide focused guidance for members on a range of sustainability issues.

Back to basics business continuity management
July 2022

Bringing together business continuity practitioners has enabled us to produce a walk-through guide that will support members to firstly raise awareness and an understanding of the concepts of business continuity management, and secondly to provide guidance on how to approach the implementation of a business continuity management programme with their organisation. 

Back to basics procurement of insurance and related services
October 2021

This guide provides an overview of the routes to market, the importance of engaging with stakeholders, and how best to present your organisation's requirements when procuring insurance and related services. We have drawn on the experience of practitioner's within public services, and those working in the insurance and legal sector. Our resident experts have contributed their insight and have shared their secrets for success. This guide will appeal to those starting out and equally to those who wish to know more, or be reminded of how to achieve better results.

Risk management toolkit
June 2021

In partnership with Marsh, the revised edition of our Risk management toolkit offers clear guidance on the risk management process and terminology. Importantly, it provides practical tools and techniques to help manage risk, deliver objectives, meet targets and maintain organisational resilience. The templates provided in the toolkit can be customised to meet your needs and those of your organisation. This toolkit will be particularly useful for public service professionals who are new to risk management, who have expanded their roles, or who have responsibility for training others.

Supporting templates and resources

Contractor risks
March 2021

Managing contracts is key to providing appropriate services, protecting the public purse, managing enterprise risk and investing in communities. With public service organisations providing such varied and essential services and products, alongside purchasing and maintaining assets (sometimes of great value) this responsibility requires informed and effective oversight and management. With assistance from sponsors and member practitioners, this guide focuses on contract risks as a starting point for those of you approaching this task for the first time, returning to it, or just in need of a refresher. 

Climate change ambition to action
December 2020

This guide contains personal stories or case studies from experienced practitioners about the actions their organisations are taking to mitigate climate change risks. In addition, resident experts in sponsor organisations have added insight to the practitioner stories in each of the four sections, creating focused guidance for members.

Transforming organisations
October 2020

This guide contains four personal stories or case studies from experienced practitioners on how different elements of their organisations have been transformed - not exclusively by COVID-19, but also a variety of ongoing transformations. In addition, resident experts in sponsor organisations have added insight to the practitioner stories in each of the four sections, creating focused guidance for members.

Risk reporting survey results
December 2019

ALARM wanted to gain a better understanding of the ways in which risk is reported to boards and committees to investigate current practices in reporting risk information to boards and committees in public services. As a result, we commissioned Glasgow Caledonian University (GCU) to review current practice in reporting risk to boards and committees across public service organisations in the UK. This involved a survey of ALARM members, as well as risk professionals within government, and detailed interviews with elected members, senior managers and risk practitioners. The results of the survey are detailed in this report. 

Risk reporting guide
December 2019

Reporting risk information is the last stage of the risk management process. How that information is presented enables management, boards and committees to fulfil their respective roles. It is essential risk information is presented in a concise yet meaningful manner. It should be sufficient for boards and committees to challenge and gain assurance that risks are being managed effectively. This guide brings together existing and best practice in risk reporting and provides some examples of existing risk reports. 

Local government insurance update
May 2019

This briefing has been produced to update members on the developments within the local government market, and aims to provide clarification around some of the terms associated with the current developments. It also raises some important issues that should be considered when evaluating options available to organisations in managing their insurable risks.

Risk workshop guide
April 2019

This guide has been produced by a small working group of ALARM members and other risk professionals who have several years' experience of planning and facilitating workshops. This knowledge has been used to inform a step by step guide on how to deliver risk workshops from conception to the production of a final risk workshop report. 

Back to basics insurance guide
February 2019

This guide is an overview of the most common types of insurance associated with organisations delivering services to citizens and communities. This guide removes the technical jargon associated with insurance policies, making it easier for professionals with limited knowledge of insurance to understand how policies may operate for public service organisations. 

Highways claims management manual
March 2018

Following the introduction of the Well-managed Highway Infrastructure: a Code of Practice, Section 2 of ALARM's Highways claims management manual has been revised to reflect the risk based approach to managing highways risks.

Major loss: ALARM guide to preparation and immediate response
November 2016

This guide is intended to be a quick and easy resource for ALARM members, providing practical guidance on what can be done both pre and post-incident to ensure impacts are mitigated. It is written from an insurance perspective and encourages early engagement with insurance partners to ensure that practical, procedural and financial support is accessed effectively. 

National performance model for risk management in public services
October 2016

Using the experience and expertise of risk managers, risk consultants and other experts, this performance model maps out risk management maturity, clearly and concisely.

New ventures, new risks
September 2016

As organisations identify opportunities and facilitate the management of risks from the public sector response to ongoing austerity measures and subsequent transformation, more questions are asked. This guide explores the recent history and current context of the various methods and models developed by the public sector to deliver services to its users. It relies on published research from well-known and respected sources to explain the major drivers for changing service delivery. It also discusses the unstoppable forces that are leading the public sector to look for more efficient and effective service delivery models. 

Children's services: ALARM guide to managing risks
July 2016

The primary purpose of this guide is to assist risk managers in identifying important issues in the complex area of children's services and to provide guidance on how those issues can be managed effectively. This guide is a comprehensive collection of professional tips and information on safeguarding, child sexual exploitation and historical abuse. It spans relevant and related topics covering: media and communications, the law, claims management, documentation, strategic risk management, commissioning and outsourcing, and insurers.

Core competencies: What does a good risk manager look like?
March 2016

This guide provides a framework aimed at risk practitioners working in public service organisations. It is intended to enhance understanding of the key knowledge, function and skills required by a professional risk practitioner, and improve the application of risk management to avoid duplication of effort and waste of resources.

A risk management standard
February 2016

This risk management standard is the result of work by a team drawn from the major risk management organisations in the UK – including ALARM. In addition, the team sought the views and opinions of a wide range of other professional bodies with interests in risk management, during an extensive period of consultation. Risk management is a rapidly developing discipline and there are many and varied views and descriptions of what risk management involves, how it should be conducted and what it is for.

The risk success story: improving performance in risk management
September 2015

This report tells the story of the successful development of risk management in public service organisations in the UK.

Freedom of Information Act 2000: ALARM good practice guide
May 2015

This guide focuses on key areas where insurance managers may encounter Freedom of Information and other information requests and provides practical tips needed for handling such requests.

Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000: ALARM good practice guide
September 2014

Covert surveillance is a tool that can reap benefits in defending liability claims. Recognising that managers of risk cannot use the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 (RIPA) guidance due to the conflicting advice given, ALARM, in partnership with practitioners and sponsors, produced this good practice guide in 2014, providing a clear understanding of how RIPA applies within this field. 

Managing the risk of fraud
May 2014

Managing the risk of fraud has never been so important. In 2014 ALARM published its fraud guide which will be updated in 2023.

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