The new year will bring many changes for businesses across Europe, but one thing for certain is that the impact of GDPR will be felt with full force. As we step into 2018 and move ever-closer to the May 25th deadline, it is imperative that GDPR preparation is at the forefront of every company’s business strategy.
While all companies must become compliant to avoid heavy fines, the more agile of businesses will use the process of becoming GDPR compliant to revolutionise their customer relationship management. Business should view the new legislation not as an administrative burden but as a chance to really add value to their customer experience.
Hype around the new legislation has definitely sparked an increased awareness of what can go wrong if data is not managed securely. Given the choice, customers may question the value of allowing a business access to their personal data, especially given the possible security risks.
With this in mind, companies need to be proactive in proving value to customers and reassuring them that personal data is being handled responsibly. If your business can easily show customers the kind of data you are collecting, why you’ve chosen to collect this particular data and explain how this will be used to positively benefit the customer, then they will be more inclined to grant access to their information.
Under the GDPR customers can demand that you provide them with information on how their data is used and then have the right to demand partial or complete erasure of this data. You cannot afford to lose this customer information just because your data privacy policies and processes are unclear or disjointed.
One key step to consider in becoming GDPR ready is to revisit how and where in your organisation personal data is held and processed. This will then allow you not only to respond to customer inquiries efficiently but also help you when seeking permission to use customer data and for what purpose. If you tell your customers what you are using their data for – to make more tailored offers or provide a more bespoke service - customers will be able to clearly see the benefits themselves and will be happy for your business to gain or maintain access to their personal data.
Using the right tools
Having a modern CRM system at the heart of your organisation can also help to provide the transparency needed to ensure GDPR compliance. It can provide not only a way of capturing data, but also lead qualification processes, opportunity tracking systems, case resolution scripts, yearly account plans and even customer journey maps.
With the right system in place, it becomes possible to capture and store records of all use of personal data and link all data transactions to each individual within the CRM. It also means that, if asked, a business can easily report back to the customer on how their data is used, keeping them aligned with GDPR rules.
In the post-GDPR era, having a 360-degree view of your customer has never been more important, and we are committed to making this process easier than ever. All businesses will need to be compliant but using a modern CRM system can play a critical role in becoming GDPR ready, while also having the potential to improve the customer experience along the way. In order to ease the GDPR transition, we provide a visual tracking tool as part of our customer journey plug-in that supports the implementation of a solid GDPR compliance programme.
With the deadline looming, businesses need to be making GDPR readiness their new year’s resolution, and putting your CRM system at the heart of this effort can help you address vital requirements of the GDPR, in the new year and beyond.