The GDPR: a brief guide for the Chief Data Officer

May 25th, 2018; the date the GDPR goes into effect. There is certainly plenty of information on the internet about what the GDPR is and what it requires from businesses. However, the impact the GDPR will have on your daily life might not be as apparent. In a series of blogs, we discuss the impact the GDPR will have on you and the changes you will have to make to continue working effectively under the new regulation. Today: The Chief Data Officer.

Realise your responsibilities

As Chief Data Officer, it’s your job to democratise the data: put the right data in the hands of the right people. While you certainly might be more hands-on with your data at times, it is your job to implement the rules and policies for regulating where data does (and doesn’t!) go. Besides managing the data infrastructure of your company, compliancy and security fall under your responsibility. No surprise, then, that the GDPR will certainly increase pressure as you move towards a compliancy-based data economy. Realising the responsibilities that come with the GDPR, is an important first step towards adapting to this new regulation.

Learn to work with your Data Protection Officer

Specifically, the GDPR means your company will often need to appoint a Data Protection Officer. This DPO will independently assess and audit the way data is managed in your company, meaning that it is crucial that you learn to work with your DPO instead of seeing him or her as a hindrance. Your DPO is independent and does not determine (or is concerned with) the purpose of the processing in your company. It will be your job to immediately address any concerns your DPO might raise, while still ensuring valuable data can be utilised optimally.

The GDPR also means you’ll have to ensure that you manage data in a responsible and well-documented way. Expect your DPO to ask you for an overview of what data is collected and who has access to specific parts of the data. To answer to these and other queries of your DPO, a wise step would be to start building your data stream map; an overview of the data that is collected, streamed and processed in your company.

See the opportunities in change

As a CDO it’s also important to realise that the GDPR is not just a challenge, it’s also an opportunity to finally implement all these changes you’ve been petitioning for years. The GDPR is the perfect opportunity to set up a new data infrastructure that is not only GDPR-compliant, but also more effective on all other aspects. The job of the CDO after the GDPR comes into effect, then, will not just be to conform to the required changes set by the DPO, but to ride the wave of change towards improvement on all aspects of data governance.

Use the right tool for the job

The tools you are currently using in your company might not comply with GDPR regulations, or allow you to perform your new duties under the GDPR. New tools designed for compliance might help turn that GDPR-pressure around. Our Data Stream Manager allows you to manage where the data in your company goes in a secure, GDPR-compliant way. The DSM enables you to easily manage and map where your data is collected and where it ends up, providing you with both the control and documentation you need. Security levels for sources and destinations means you’ll never accidentally send data to the wrong place, while comprehensive omnichannel-integration gives you an excellent 360-degree view of your customers to boot. Are you ready for the GDPR? (we are!)

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