Why the GDPR matters to your small business.
Your small business
Running a small business has given you immense personal satisfaction. From growing your profit margins, to scaling up your services, you feel confident that your company is set for a sweet future. But, if you were to ask any other successful small business owner what enables their success, they’d be likely to tell you one important element: Systems.
Effective systems enable small business success
Effective, responsive and adaptable systems within your business are the key component for true success. As a small business owner, you need to focus on growth, while your robust systems manage the needs of your customer base. Effective systems are built for growth and, when it comes to ensuring your business success, they’re built to be legally compliant too.
Legally compliant systems
Once you’ve waded past the legalese and figured out your operational requirements, there’s a benefit to legally compliant systems you may not have considered yet: they’ll make you (and save you) money. Legally compliant systems and processes ensure your company is ready (and certified!) to do business with anyone. Whether it’s a governmental organisation, or a small customer to service, your business is set to attract a wider range of clientele, once your systems are legally compliant. Let’s not even mention the importance of not having to pay GDPR fines. Lest we remind you: the issuing of GDPR fines has begun!
Your small business and data compliance
Every business – even yours! – needs data to operate. Whether it’s your forecasts and projections, tables or figures, data is the lifeblood of your organisation. And, when it comes to your:
- Employee information
- Customer personal data
- Marketing strategies
- Operational information
- Company infrastructure
Compliance with the GDPR is of paramount importance.
GDPR for your small business
Processing personal data is an important part of your small business operations. Ensuring your small business policies and procedures – and the implementation thereof – are compliant with the GDPR is essential.
Exceptions to GDPR compliance
Let’s rip off the band-aid immediately: if you’ve been told your business need not comply with the demands of the GDPR, the chances are that advice was incorrect. While there are some exceptions, these are very small and quite nuanced. Within your business itself, GDPR compliance remains essential.
Small business GDPR compliance
As a small business owner who looks forward to enjoying the longevity your business could enjoy, taking GDPR compliance seriously is an important step. As your small business evolves and grows, your need for GDPR compliance may grow too. Getting ahead of your operational requirements means you’re setting your small business up for success. If your small business:
- Employs more than 250 people: You’ll need to appoint a Data Protection Officer (DPO). But, don’t get too complacent if you employ fewer than 250 people – there are some nuances in the GDPR that mean you may need to appoint a Data Protection Officer.
- Regularly processes personal data in any way: You’ll need to ensure GDPR data compliance procedures are strictly followed and implemented, no matter how many people you employ. Your business must begin, maintain, and update a register of records of processing activities, as outlined in Article 30 of the GDPR.
- Grows through your networking efforts: You’ll need to obtain proper consent from your new contacts, before adding them to your mailing list or marketing initiatives.
- Needs to adapt its processes: Call in the experts to help you align and ensure GDPR compliance.
- Realises it can’t do everything: You need extra hands to ensure GDPR compliance. We know the right hands that’ll help your business grow!
- Needs expert help: Managing data subject rights requests and sorting out data breaches or data incidents need not stall your business success.
- Needs more than you realised: Data Protection Impact Assessments are an important, and often mandatory, component of your organisation’s data compliance requirements. If your team is launching a new product, embracing new technologies, or initiating a brand new programme, you may need a Data Protection Impact Assessment or risk assessment to ensure you stay on the right side of regulation.
GDPR compliance is no longer a nice-to-have. It’s a legal requirement and operational imperative. Let’s begin your small business GDPR compliance journey today.
Philipa is the lead consultant and auditor at ProPrivacy. With clients as far afield as Canada, South Africa, Kenya, Germany, Spain and other such exotic locations, besides Cork and elsewhere in Ireland, Philipa enjoys a broad view of the state of data protection, privacy and cyber security worldwide. Philipa’s passion is manageable data compliance for SMEs.
Philipa is a qualified teacher besides holding a computer science (Bachelor of Science in Artificial Intelligence Programming) and electronic and intellectual property law (LLB) qualified. She is trained in constitutional (fundamental) rights litigation and enjoys a good debate.
Philipa has over twenty years of experience working in different sized organisations and sectors on operational, governance, risk management and compliance matters. She is an analytical and focused person that enjoys a challenge in the workplace. She loves technology, systems and people and has a passion for showing people how technology can make life easier and better. She understands that the world is driven by data today but privacy is paramount. Responsibly developed AI excites Philipa for the future.