There's been a great deal of apprehension around the European Union's General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which came into force on 25 May. Now that it's here, many organizations are still struggling to see how the new rules will impact the way they collect and then use customer data. And while the GDPR regulations apply to the EU, in today's global marketplace, the impact is being felt far and wide.
The good news is that it's never too late to refocus on the customer. GDPR presents a great opportunity for organizations to reassess their end-to-end customer journeys and build a better understanding of customer needs and expectations. Customer data provides countless opportunities to achieve growth through personalization and enhanced customer experience, but in order to be granted access to that data, organizations need to establish trust and be transparent about what the data will be used for and who it will be shared with.
Organizations are beginning to address this: KPMG International's 2018 CEO Outlook survey found that 59% of CEOs believe that protecting their customers' data is one of their most important responsibilities.
To get this right, consumers must willingly share their data. A recent report by KPMG International of 10,000 global customers, Me, my life, my wallet, found that customers are willing to share their personal data if it helps them live their lives more easily; if the organization is going to use it in an intelligent and informed way.
Businesses must therefore ask themselves a few key questions. What data am I holding? What data do I actually need? What do I intend to do with that data? How will I maintain rigorous governance frameworks?
There are four key points to consider:
Data privacy should not be addressed as standalone. It is a core component of a broader customer data and analytics strategy which can lead to new growth opportunities. Advanced, predictive analytics can help identify opportunities to accelerate customer growth by creating tailored services to customers, expanding into new markets, creating new products, and doing a better job of serving existing customers. A data privacy mandate is a critical component of this and should be led from the top, measured through ongoing customer feedback and personalized to meet evolving customer expectations.
I believe those who see the opportunity in GDPR will be the future winners. Companies who show a continued focus on the underlying principles of GDPR and ongoing acknowledgement of the issues that led to the regulation coming into force can expect to build trust and ultimately deliver better outcomes for their customers through more tailored and personal experiences. Those who see this as another regulatory requirement could find themselves paying the price of customer loyalty in the long run.