As you may know, by May 2018, GDRP compliance goes into full effect. GDPR stands for General Data Protection Regulation and replaces the previous Directive. The GDPR covers all EU member-countries, and does not require individual countries to implement or interpret. Instead, the GDPR applies to the collection and storage of data regarding people residing in the EU, even if your organization is outside of the EU.
Any tool or service that collects and stores data – from your online customers, leads, prospects, visitors, etc, on your behalf – is called the data processor, and your organization is defined as the data controller. What the GDPR essentially means is that you will need to have your data secured properly, and that the (usually generic) Privacy Disclaimers most websites currently use will no longer be sufficient. More specifically, you will need to a) perform a serious audit on how your data is stored, secured, encrypted, and improve where necessary, b) customize your Privacy Statement – which should not be a generic boilerplate, but needs to be tailored for your business, and c) assign a person responsible for privacy communications.
While the GDPR regulations pose practical implementation challenges, at the same time, they reflect the strategic notion that data have become one of the most crucial assets of any company. The logical implication of the GDPR is that companies who are excellent in managing data will have a significant competitive advantage. We urge therefore not to consider GDPR an obstacle, but rather as an opportunity for rebuilding and redesigning flows, products or services to make them both privacy and user friendly.
Here are some steps we recommend you take to make your organization ready for these changes and be on the road to being truly data-driven:
1. Seize The Opportunity
The implementation of new data protection laws is the perfect opportunity to review your current offerings and products to prepare them for the future. This is because better privacy not only enhances the user experience, when handled well, it also helps you mitigate risks to your brand. Most users reward a company and will pay more for a service that respects their privacy over a competitor offering the same but doesn’t pay the same respect. So, in this sense, the GDPR is an opportunity for brands and businesses to increase their brand value and conversion.
2. New Ways of Structuring Data
Another area that presents room for innovation in light of the GDPR law is the handling and processing of data. As secure privacy becomes the default setting for online data, GDPR will encourage companies to take a long hard look at the way they manage this data. These days one of the recurring problems with data management is the loss of metadata due to being moved around so much to undergo transformational processes. The new laws will stimulate businesses to make data more trackable and structured. In order to achieve that, new and innovative ways to process and store data will be required. Once the hard part of data structuring is done, it will allow data analysts to develop better prediction models. Enhanced prediction models not only mean more insight to where the data goes and where it comes from. More importantly, they make it possible for you to provide better service for your customers. If you want to know more about this, let us know and we can quickly introduce you to the field with a workshop.
3. New Mindset
Making sure your products and services are GDPR-proof will also require appropriately skilled people. To avoid costly mistakes, you’ll need help from professionals with not only knowledge of data management, data protection and GDPR compliance, but also how to design a data-driven business. But since it is unlikely that all of your employees possess these skills and knowledge (yet), it is important to make your team aware of the adjustments and the fact that they might have to change their mindsets and their way of working. Furthermore, depending on the nature of your business, it would make sense to acquire the right technical and creative skills to empower your teams to execute, use data, and implement advanced technology solutions bottom-up, with speed, efficiency, and joy.
If you need a hand to map out your customer journey and data management plan and visualize what’s going on, where to look, and how to spot problems and opportunities by looking at your data, we’re here for you.