End of Life Policy on your data and GDPR 

Does your GDPR have a plan for what happens to data storage media, ie, your hard drives, DAT tapes, floppy drives,  smartphones etc. at end of life? The only absolutely secure way is to shred the drives, tapes and smartphones in an industrial shredder such as what we have at Electronic Recycling. If it’s not shredded it is not secure. For those interested in sustainability, we also have an option of securely shredding the data and saving the drive should your drive be reusable.

Brendan Palmer – TAB member Owner www.Electronic-Recycling.ie

 

The Most Important thing to do for Your Google Search Results 

Visit Google and type your business name, street address and city into the search bar. What should pop up on the upper right of the results is a Google Knowledge Panel of your business. You should see your correct business name, phone number, and a button that leads to your website. If the knowledge panel has a link in the middle that reads, “Own this Business?” that means your Google Business Listing needs to be claimed by YOU. Make sure you claim it with a Gmail address and password that you will not forget. Follow the instructions to claim and optimise your listing. It’s the most fundamental thing you can do to improve your business’ search results. (And if your digital marketing agency doesn’t know anything about this, start shopping for a new digital marketing agency.)

Tom Shipley, Cole-Dalton Marketing Services, cole-dalton.com

 

Communications

You should use one of the online tools for groups working collaboratively on projects:  Basecamp, Asana, WhatsApp Groups, Trello, Wunderlist etc, but you must examine which one you like and which is suited to you. However, all are better than email.

Ian Keogh – Managing Director Keogh Hospitality -Dublin

 

GDPR – what it means for you

By Kirby Tarrant – O’Grady Solicitors and TAB Member

The GDPR applies to all organisations, regardless of size so it includes small and medium enterprises and associations.

There is existing Data Protection Legislation pursuant to the Data Protection Acts 1988 and 2003 however, the new Data Privacy regime is expected to result in enhanced transparency, accountability, and protection of individuals rights.

What Benefits will GDPR bring?

 The GDPR will bring the following benefits: –

  •  It will give individuals residing in the EU more control over their Personal Data i.e. (“any information relating to a living identified or identifiable natural person”);
  • It will make it easier for businesses to do business across the EU;
  • It will give consumers confidence that their Personal Data will be respected and controlled.

What will GDPR mean for Data Controllers and Data Processors?

 The GDPR will bring accountability to Data Controllers and Data Processors. A Data Controller is defined as a person/company/other body, who either alone or with others, controls the contents and use of Personal Data. A Data Processor is defined as a person/company/other body, who processes Personal Data on behalf of a Data Controller but does not include an employee of the Data Controller who processes such data during his/her employment.

What should organisations ask themselves about Personal Data?

Organisations should ask themselves the following questions in relation to Personal Data that they hold: –

  •  Why are you holding it?
  • How did you obtain it?
  • Why was it originally gathered?
  • How long will you retain it?
  • How secure is it, both in terms of encryption and accessibility?
  • Do you ever share it with third parties, and, if so, on what basis?
  • Establish whether consent for processing Personal Data was “freely given”?

What should you do to prepare for GDPR?

As a business you should consider doing the following: –

  •  Carry out staff awareness training – anyone handling client/customer/employee data is impacted;
  • Check all contracts, letters of engagement and website with GDPR in mind;
  • Review your policies and procedures for the storing and handling of confidential client/customer data and Privacy Notices;
  • Employers should review all Personal Data held to ascertain why/how it was obtained, why it continues to be held and for how long, how secure it is and whether it is ever shared with third parties and on what basis etc.
  • Consider whether you need to obtain consent to hold Personal Data on employees in a separate document rather than within their employment contract;
  • Audit your IT systems for compliance and risk to Personal Data;
  • Consider if you need to assign a Data Protection Officer – part time or full time.
  • If you use customer consent to record data – are you managing that process properly?
  • How will you manage Data Access requests from people seeking to access, delete or amend their data?
  • If there is a data breach, how will you deal with that and make sure your staff can also?
  • Put an incident response plan in place.

What should you do if there is a Data Breach?

The GDPR introduces a mandatory 72-hour breach notification requirement. All breaches must be reported to the Data Protection Commissioner and to the affected individuals. Failure to report a breach when required to do so could result in a fine, in addition to a fine for the breach itself.

What are the consequences if you fail to comply with GDPR?

There are consequences if businesses fail to comply with the GDPR: –

  •  For serious infringements, penalties up to €20,000,000 (or 4% of total annual global turnover, whichever is the higher);
  • GDPR now makes it much easier for individuals to bring private legal action if their data privacy has been breached;
  • It also allows individuals to sue for compensation if they have suffered non-material damage.
 

Leadership Tips to Systematise Your Business

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At some point, every business must impose a systematic structure on its operations or risk losing untold amounts of time and money on inefficiency and lapses in productivity. Having systems in place not only guards against these negative factors, it helps businesses expand with fewer difficulties because everyone in the organisation understands how things get done and who the ultimate customer or end-user is.

“Anything performed in your company at least twice needs a proven system,” notes efficiency expert Nancy Gaines. “Anything performed three times or more should be automated.”

Low-level business systems that get repeated (and should, therefore, be automated) range from lead generation and social media marketing to client onboarding, employee recruiting and inventory management. High-level areas that cry out for more detailed systematising, Gaines says, include sales, marketing, HR functions and front- and back-office activities.

How should you as CEO or business owner get the systematising process rolling?

Identify and evaluate all existing systems. Instruct a key team leader to compile a list of all existing business operations with the goal of asking fundamental questions about each one:

  • Why does this system exist?
  • What specific purpose does it serve?
  • What challenges does the system overcome?
  • How does it contribute to the growth of the business?

Get your employees involved. For many, if not most, business operations, your employees are the ones who know “how things work.” As part of the systematising (or mapping) process, involve them in identifying issues that prevent a smooth running of the business, such as paperwork bottlenecks or procedural roadblocks. This information is crucial for improving business systems.

Ask employees to identify and record daily, repetitive tasks for one week. A compilation of all employee records of their week’s activities should give you a clear idea of where they all fit into the bigger picture.

Pinpoint customers and end-users for all systems. No matter what the process or system is, there should always be an end-user in mind–customers (internal or external) or vendor. A system that has no such end-user is a good candidate for elimination. It follows, therefore, that individual employees or a team should know precisely what that end-user wants (quality of product/service, turnaround or delivery time, etc.), in order to provide better service.

Identify which systems aren’t operating efficiently. In most businesses, certain processes consume the most time, money and employee effort. When these systems are dysfunctional, this consumption is far out of proportion to the return on investment. (This is especially true if the business owner or CEO is continually called upon to intervene and “repair” the situation.) Any such broken system is a good place to start the comprehensive systematising process.

Document high-end systems. Some attempts at systematisation get bogged down in the effort to document all systems within the company. Generally speaking, this isn’t necessary for low-level operations and automated functions. Instead, focus on thoroughly documenting your high-end systems (sales, employee recruiting, inventory management, etc.), so that everyone involved understands the most efficient way to achieve objectives in these areas.

You’ll find this particularly helpful when introducing new employees to the process. Detailed documentation removes the time-wasting component wherein people keep asking questions about process and procedure, instead of actually getting the work done. With documented procedures, the learning curve is much quicker.

Businesses that systematise their operations and eliminate “broken” ways of doing things are better positioned for growth than their less-organised competitors. And they’ll likely outperform in key areas such as product quality and consistent customer service.

Want more advice on systematizing your business or sales and marketing or general advice from other business owners like you? Find out if a TAB Board is right for you!