“The Cloud” is such a controversial topic. For banks and insurance companies, the main obstacles are regulations and data protection concerns. What will become of it?

 

Advantages

To get straight to our main point: We at Assentis believe that migration to “The Cloud” is inevitable. For banks and insurance companies, it brings significant advantages for customer communication, especially if it’s document based, regardless of whether the distribution is physical or electronic. The key takeaways are scalable computing power, cost savings through demand-based pricing and high-speed rendering. If you add advanced, highly individual, business-oriented managed services, the benefits are considerable. As Aspire writes[1], “the industry is now evolving into cloud-based customer experience software that deals with creating, managing and orchestrating omni-channel customer interactions.”

 

Drawbacks

On the other hand, there is general inertia and considerable concerns over data protection. These concerns are not solved inherently by cloud servers located in their own country. Under certain circumstances, a private cloud within one’s own IT infrastructure could provide a solution, but the computing power then has to be procured and maintained, it is no longer possible to scale cost-effectively and temporarily as required. Consequently, it is no longer possible to speak of managed services, because hosting, operating and updating applications in a private cloud are their own responsibility.

 

A possible solution

So the key question is how to combine data protection with cloud-based solutions. Unfortunately, it is impossible to answer this conclusively. Developments are complex and deeply intertwined with politics and jurisdiction, as this past year has undoubtedly shown us. But there is yet good news if you ask the right questions. When it comes to data protection, one question is particularly obvious: What data are we talking about?

 

Focus well, and the solution surfaces

At the center of these considerations is the same basic assumption that all our solutions and projects share. It is the issue of concrete use cases, fact remains that there exists no “one-size-fits-all” solution for modern customer communication management, even if the CCM market or technology-driven idealism would suggest that. We have implemented hundreds of use cases. The successes lay without exception in the focusing on the desired outcome, not on what a system can or cannot achieve.

The cloud already provides good services for rendering of digital information and documents without PII (personally identifying information). Just think of documents based on preferences, needs, region, age, gender, or other classifications such as presentations, product brochures, suggestions, or campaign-based mailings. Using the cloud, such documents can easily be rendered individually and distributed across all channels, cost-effectively, timely and in quantity – without conflicting with data protection.

There are also graduations within identifying information. Salutation, name and residential address do not represent the same data protection risk as information on investments, account balances and transactions, or medical bills and medical history in the case of health insurers.

 

Gradually and slowly, but steadily

All or nothing is not the only approach. There are ways to try out the advantages of the cloud in customer communication in small steps. And not least, to be prepared to take the next step when the time comes. Sales and marketing materials can be a very good place to start.

We have already installed some highly individualized use cases for customers into the cloud and would be happy to assist you piloting your own use case.

 

[1] Aspire CCM Leaderboard Market Study 2018, www.aspireleaderboard.com