According to a new Heart Matters study by SAP, Australian companies are not keeping pace with their customers' data protection expectations in the digitization of their offerings.
It found that 84% of Australians expect brands to provide transparency about how their personal information is used, but only 34% meet that expectation.
Scott Treller, Executive General Manager, SAP Customer Experience, Australia and New Zealand, says the results underscore Australians concerns about brands' collection and use of their data.
“Today's consumers are digitally savvy and conscious of the information they share. Therefore, they expect the certainty that their data is safe, ”he says.
"Brands need to ensure that they protect customer information and provide the ability to control its use if they are to win trust and ultimately consumer business."
A question of trust
The study found that there is a mismatch between customer expectations about privacy and the way companies perform, which if not taken into account, will have a significant impact.
84% of Australians expect companies not to share their data with third parties. However, only 37% believe that a company they've shared their data with keeps it safe.
To stay one step ahead of customer expectations, brands need to build trust by putting customer needs first and giving them the freedom to choose how to get involved.
“Start by giving customers visibility and control over their own personal data. Not only does this give customers a better understanding of your data practices, but it also allows them to define their own experiences to build trust. There is no better partner for companies than an informed, competent and data-driven customer, ”says Treller.
Expectations vs. Experiences
The Heart Matters study also showed a gap between customer expectations and actual experiences in areas such as:
- Answering a customer inquiry within 24 hours (82% vs. 41%)
- Solve customer problems in less than three interactions (83% vs. 43%)
- Ethical dealings with suppliers (78% vs. 44%)
- Working actively to reduce gender and racial inequality (73% and 43%)
- Respecting the rights and well-being of their workers (81% vs. 58%)
- Implementation of specific guidelines to reduce and report your CO2 emissions and your carbon footprint (57% versus 36%)
The full report from the Heart Matters Study is available for download here: sap.com/asia/heartmatters.
The article on data protection, please! first appeared in Retail World Magazine.