Why GDPR compliance is more than an IT concern

Why GDPR compliance is more than an IT concern

Although the European Union's General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) has already launched, businesses across the globe are still scrambling to comply with its lengthy data privacy and security guidelines.

Inevitably, when the question of GDPR compliance - or compliance with any data privacy regulations, for that matter - comes up, the matter is quickly dumped onto the shoulders of the IT department. While the nuts and bolts of compliance - updating databases, changing consent forms and overhauling incident response plans, etc. - certainly fall under the purview of IT, GDPR's reach will stretch into every corner of the organization. GDPR compliance is much more than an IT concern, affecting numerous business units, and marketing, in particular.

Marketing goes back to square one

GDPR raises some pretty evident IT and legal concerns, but don't overlook the impact these regulations will have on marketing departments, especially through the rest of the year. Data-driven strategies are the order of the day in the marketing world, with in-house teams and agencies alike leveraging customer information and big data technology to power their campaigns.

In fact, data has become so inextricable from modern marketing practices that many industry members base their core strategies around the insights they glean from customer information. According to a 2017 Winterberry Group survey, nearly 80 percent of respondents believe customer data is integral to their advertising and marketing plans.

Marketers need to reassess how they use customer data in their campaigns.Marketers need to reassess how they use customer data in their campaigns.

However, marketing teams may need to scrap those plans in light of GDPR. The regulations place strict controls on how businesses go about collecting consumer data. While in the past they may have been able to indiscriminately gather customer information without a clear goal or project in mind, that freewheeling strategy won't fly under GDPR.

GDPR guidelines clearly stipulate that any data collection efforts be clearly spelled out with explicit consent forms. That means tactics meant to get tacit approval from customers - pre-checked boxes, ambiguous language, et cetera - will no longer be permitted.

"Addressing the litany of changes needed to comply with GDPR won't be easy."

Throwing another wrench in the works is the fact that no collected data can be grandfathered in under the new rules. Marketing departments will have to essentially throw out whatever customer data they have gathered over the years and give customers a chance to opt back into their data-driven projects.

Finalize GDPR compliance today

Addressing the litany of changes needed to comply with GDPR won't be easy, especially for organizations that choose to go it alone. Working with an IT consulting partner can help speed along the process and ensure that every item is accounted for. There's no room for error when it comes to GDPR, but an expert IT consultant can navigate you through a comprehensive compliance checklist. To get the benefit of the best IT services NYC has to offer, contact TEKConn today.

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