More than eighteen months ago, when GDPR was released into the EU business, it triggered an unprecedented panic in many countries, and enterprises across the world rush to comply. The fear of losing business with the EU was the main reason for this frenzy.
However, a year and a half down the line, it would appear that this frenzy has paid off in terms of being data and privacy regulations ready for most of these organizations. It is somewhat like the fear of a crash that businesses have faced repeatedly, a little like the massive fear of the Y2K turndown. While Y2K only needed a bug fix (in some ways), GDPR needed a whole way transformation of the organization. The biggest reason was that data has become the lifeblood of all enterprises, and getting surety of privacy compliance was a task that would be needed to fight on all fronts.
Secondly, GDPR is a legislative approach, non-compliance would attract huge fines, often crippling for medium size or smaller companies. Google paid 50 million euros (£44m) for an indiscretion, a fine that would have crippled a smaller tech brand, maybe even wiping out the business.
However, it is clear that the enforcement of GDPR has led many companies on the path to prosperity. Its emphasis on pushing companies to ensure consumer data privacy has led companies to adopt better technology for data usage, better policies that ensure privacy and assure customers. In all, this forced compliance has ensured companies respect consumers’ privacy, using appropriate systems to drive this. The experience that they got while racing to meet GDPR, will also help most companies meets the CCPA compliance when it is enforced by January 1, 2020.
While the complexity and documentation that were required for meeting GDPR compliance were not easy to meet, the expertise this exercise has imparted to global organizations will stand them in good stead as data primacy increases. It has also ensured companies respect and value customer data, their gold mine. With customer data pouring in from myriad sources during a marketing activity – website traffic from inbound clicks, email campaigns and even data on sales teams’ devices, this was a much-needed exercise. When collated on a CRM platform, this data is easy to manage from the GDPR perspective. A CRM platform provides the ease of access for data that belongs to customers- some may want data access and even a right to erasure- where a customer wants to see his or her data that has been recorded, and may even request for erasing it! GDP has ensured all these functionalities are available to companies, and hence made their own data structuring and compliance that much easier. Non-controversial, clean data that can be used with perfect privacy compliances- is a sterling possession for any company today. Essentially, a scramble to be GDPR compliant has given the companies the power to sync their three essential pillars- people, processes, and technology.
It is this clarity and sync that will drive companies towards better business prospects. Essentially, companies that have complied with GDPR, CCPA, and other data privacy legislation will have an advantage over others, also since these regulations are here to stay and will, if anything, become more stringent with time. Once compliant, firms only need to add marginally to their abilities to confirm, and with each margin, they will get better at their own customer data privacy processes. This is a situation that can lead to nothing but wins.
Perhaps confirming to a landmark data privacy compliance has more advantages than challenges!