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With GDPR coming, you need technology you can trust

August 23, 2017
Posted in Resources
August 23, 2017 GraemeH

GDPR comes into force from May 2018. It will bring much more extensive and stringent data protection policies to organisations across the EU.

If you’re not already preparing, it’s time to start. Because GDPR relates to data – specifically the management of personal data – organisations like yours with lots of personnel need to be clear about how affected and exposed they might be. This is not just true of your core, static workforce which we have noted many are beginning to understand and get control over, but you must also consider the transient, temporary workers, and those workers you will be TUPE’ing in or out of your business and how you handle those processes. Failure to comply with the requirements of GDPR at any stage will result in large fines.

How can you ensure this doesn’t happen or at least mitigate some of the risks? Can technology play a role in this for you? Your people, processes and your policies need to work together, be robust and be scalable. By implementing effective technology, specifically designed to support Facilities Management businesses, underpinned by integrated systems, productive relationships, and progressive policies, you can quickly protect yourself, your business, your employees and your customers. Failure to do this puts you at risk of non-compliance with GDPR requirements and will also add overhead and latency to your business, which in an industry or ultra-fine margin will make you uncompetitive and pose a fatal threat to your on-going success.

But how do you know you are making the right decisions about which technology to choose and who to implement it?
Successful relationships are built on trust. This same trust must now extend to technology. You need to be completely confident that the systems you have in place are integrated, secure and fool-proof for compliance and governance purposes. Facilities Management is about people, but the IT infrastructure underpinning those people is essential. Your business demands optimal technology solutions, which are fit for purpose for every task demanded of them.

Facilities Management organisations already collect vast amounts of data. The devices collecting this data are multiplying, fast. Cisco predicts that the number of connected objects will jump from 8.7 billion to 50 billion by 20201. Data will be distributed astronomically quickly, and you need to know it is being seamlessly managed.
For Facilities Management businesses, siloed hardware is no longer a secure option. It’s already inefficient, but when GDPR comes into effect it will also be untenable – impossible to manage, offer uncertainty on the question of compliance, and worst of all will be time-consuming for your employees to work with. The ripples of this are obvious and are not the focus of this paper but one you will likely already appreciate.

But successful change isn’t just about installing the right technology. It’s also about educating all those interacting with it as to why it’s there. Your employees must be made clear on their personal responsibilities regarding the creation and distribution of personal data. Where new technology is used for administrative processes, they must be educated about what they need to do, and why. Not using jargon or technical terms, but with everyday language. IT providers delivering effective solutions to Facilities Management companies must be able to communicate as well as implement.

Taking of advantage of Cloud-based technology solutions
As more Facilities Management business processes inevitably become virtual, and workloads shift to the Cloud, all those involved must recognise the evolving environment within which their data now resides.

With functionality advancing constantly, and the impact on working practices changing how people use technology to complete even the simplest of tasks, your employees must learn to adapt.

For you, as a provider of people to deliver services, this means continually analysing processes and identifying ways to achieve best practice across your organisation. Monitor performance, assess how your employees are coping with the technologies they use and specifically with regard to security. Most importantly, address any issues with data quality quickly and positively.

With the right technology in place, you can accomplish most of your data governance challenges for relatively low cost, meet GDPR requirements and protect your business.

Data governance will only be effective if your data itself is legal and accurate. This is a big task, and an ongoing one.

With so much at stake, it’s worth involving a technology specialist that is an expert in working with companies like yours. For the relationship between you and your technology provider to succeed, it’s important to shift the nature of what you perceive the technology can do for your organisation. Stop thinking of technology providers as vendors or suppliers, and start thinking of them as business partners. Why? Because they should also have a mutual, vested interest in your business.

Your preferred providers should have intricate knowledge of the business processes, operations and functionality required to deliver the ultimate technology solution for your business. Facilities Management is a highly specialised industry, fraught with complexity and your investment in choosing the right technology is at risk if you choose a ‘jack of all trades’ supplier that does not have the deep embedded experience and knowledge to ensure your IT investment delivers what you need.

It’s not just about IT solutions, it’s about maintaining your reputation, protecting your assets and people, and ensuring compliance. So, you need to know you’re working with people who share the same perspective and long-term objectives, rather than just with immediate revenue goals.

If your technology provider is becoming your business partner, it is of critical importance they understand your business at as many levels as possible. Help them to help you.
Time for Timegate & Servicetrac
Innovise – and our two core solutions – are ideally placed to help you on your GDPR journey. By exerting tight controls over the flow of data in and out of your organisation, the technology keeps your sensitive information protected with minimum or zero disruption to your day-to-day business.

As a dedicated support services technology solutions built specifically for your sort of organisation gives you the complete visibility of your workforce in real-time. Know what information you are sharing with who and when, from pre-employment through to payroll, from delivery to audits. Our solutions grow with your business securely, and through the changes you will require as your business needs change and the market conditions dictate.

It’s everything you need to meet GDPR requirements and protect you from risk. So, what are you waiting for?
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