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The Importance of Establishing Digital Trust
In a world where almost any product or service can be purchased online from countless companies globally, trust is a significant differentiator. Without it, businesses will not trade, and consumers will not buy. Digital trust is the confidence people have in an organization’s ability to keep their digital data secure and to handle it with integrity and accountability.
Trust is based on the perception that another person or organization will deliver on a promise to do or provide something. Traditionally, people (salespeople, support staff, managers, etc.) provided the basis for trust. As businesses go digital, there are fewer human touchpoints and interactions with customers. This change drives the need for digital platforms to build and drive trust with the following focus:
- Integrity–acting honestly and upright
- Competence—being capable and competent within a given area
- Benevolent—balancing one’s interests with the interest of others
- Predictability—consistent delivery of products or services
Traditional approaches of creating a reputation for trustworthiness through branding, advertising, and physical presence are shifting to the trustworthiness customers perceive as they experience millions of digital interactions across their entire customer journey. Establishing and maintaining digital trust is an increasingly critical part of how enterprises do business.
Building digital trust starts with two main components:
- Mechanical Trust—the controls to deliver predefined outputs reliably and predictably and ensuring cybersecurity in the digital world
- Relational Trust—the unwritten promise to abide by the social norms in the evolving relationship between the customer and the digital enterprise
To establish and maintain trust—businesses need to make sure they are delivering on both mechanical and relational trust. Without balance, customers won’t share the data required to drive personal customer experience (CX). And if the CX is lacking, it won’t be long before customers are seeking alternatives.
For the mechanical trust, organizations should directly address the challenges and opportunities in identity and access management (IAM) and security, including new approaches such as customer IAM, decentralized identity, Zero Trust security and advanced authentication/authorization approaches.
Regarding relational trust, refine privacy policies to reflect a more transparent and peer-like relationship between the business and its customers; and then make sure to deliver on the promises those policies represent. It’s also important to assure customers that using AI and machine learning capabilities to leverage “big data” is designed to make their experiences better and are being implemented ethically.
Stephen M.R. Covey, author of “The Speed of Trust,” says, “Trust always affects two measurable outcomes: speed and cost.” When trust falls—in a relationship, on a team, in a company, in an industry, with a customer—speed decreases with it. That results in redundancy in processes, everyone checking up on everyone else, cost more. Where trust is low, everything takes longer and costs more.
Security in UC&C is a big deal and has many dimensions including building digital trust. For more insight on the challenges and opportunities to secure UC&C solutions and what this means for your business, join me on Friday, Aug. 28, when I’ll be presenting a session titled, “Communications & Collaboration Security” from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. If you haven’t registered already, register here. Security in UC&C is a big deal and has many dimensions including building digital trust.