How the new GDPR rules will impact on the industry and how customer service teams can take advantage of these regulations to improve their service.
Agents will need the tools to deliver proactive compliance
The GDPR will provide comprehensive and far-reaching criteria for businesses to adhere to, since it will apply to the whole of the EU and any global company which holds data on EU citizens. The new, much stricter rules will impact how businesses capture and store customer data, including the data captured in contact centres. Whilst this means much firmer rules around call recording and archiving, it also highlights how vital it is that agents understand how to comply and that they have the tools to achieve compliance. And, there is no escaping from it, especially when the risk of non-compliance is huge. Everyone knows the potential penalties will be very severe, with fines of up to €20 million or 4% of the business’ annual global turnover.
Whilst you will no doubt be training your agents in key aspects of GDPR, such as how to deal with request to access personal data, consumer requests to correct such data, the consumers ‘right to be forgotten’ and how to gain consent to use personal data, is this enough? Simply recording your calls and doing random compliance checks will not provide confidence in your compliance. To be certain of GDPR compliance, call centres need to be capturing and analysing every customer interaction. This will show that your agents are correctly asking for the customer’s consent, or properly documenting revocation of consent. And if they not, you need to be able to quickly identify which agents need specific GPDR coaching to correct the problem.
Consumers are becoming increasingly aware of their rights over their own data. They have very clear expectations about how their data is handled when they call in or interact online and these expectations are heightened with GDPR. This will mean agents will need GDPR guidance while on a call. With real-time analytics, agents can receive next-best-action guidance reminders, script adherence notifications or other assistance – such as a reminder to obtain consent to contact the customer in the future – all based on what is happening on the live call. If you don’t provide your agents with tools like this, not only will their job become increasingly pressurised, but you will expose the business to significant financial and reputational risks.
Contact centres will also need to ensure they protect call recordings in the same way they would protect any digital or written data. That’s because calls contain data a lot of personal data where the customer can not only be identified but also where a picture of their lifestyle can be created. All of this is information is susceptible to a data breach and it is very likely that cybercriminals are creating new ways to generate money based on GDPR legislation. This means call centres will need to choose the right technology platforms, to meet the specific aspects of GDPR requirements. You should look for platforms that are compliant with security standards, such as ISO27001 or Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards (PCI DSS).
I realise that I’ve mentioned a lot of threats. But there is an upside to GDPR. If agents are given the right tools and coaching, customers will receive a better experience. This will enable call centres to reinforce how recognise the value to customers of their own data – and how they are protecting it for them. This proactive form of compliance will strengthen brand values and could deliver an edge in the market.
Frank Sherlock, VP International at CallMiner