Trust an imperative factor for competitive differentiation in India

MicrosoftTrust has become an imperative factor for organizations defining the competitiveness for them, and even nations, according to a study conducted by Microsoft, in partnership with IDC,

The study revealed that 41 percent consumers in India trust that their personal data will be treated in a trustworthy manner by organizations offering digital services. As a result, trust is emerging as a competitive advantage for businesses.

Bank Transaction, Service Purchase and Online Purchase are the most frequent digital services and activities that respondents in India perform.

The five elements of trust that consumers consider when they use digital services are: privacy, security, reliability, ethics, and compliance.

Loss of consumer trust can have serious implications on the business. More than half (53 percent) of the respondents would switch to another organization if they experienced a breach of trust while using a digital service and 32 percent will stop using the affected type of digital service altogether.

The study found that only 7 percent of consumers prefer to transact with an organization that offers a cheaper but less trusted digital platform.

Additionally, 73 percent of consumers highlighted that they would recommend a trusted digital service to others even if the cost is higher.

Microsoft recommends five key strategies to build consumer trust in organizations.

First, organizations should embed trust at the core of digital transformation plans. They should seek to address the policy, regulatory, and ethical issues that these technologies raise while achieving the highest compliance with data protection laws and standards for themselves and their customers.

Secondly, organizations should prioritize security and privacy as the two most important trust elements. If either of the two is weak, it directly impacts the other. It is essential for organizations to start their journey of building a trust framework by prioritizing a holistic cyber defense strategy as well as defining what type of data is critical to protect.

Third, they should orchestrate dialogue between governments, technology companies and other industry stakeholders. The responsibility of building trust should not rest solely on the shoulders of organizations providing digital services. The broader industry, including regulatory institutions as well as technology companies, plays a critical part too.

Next, organizations should create an ecosystem of partners that value trust. Organizations should only work with partners that respect customer’s privacy. Technology partners should give customers control over their data and be transparent in their privacy practices, offering meaningful privacy choices and transparency on the processing and storage of data.

Lastly, organizations should secure their digital services on trusted cloud platforms. This is important especially because an increasing number of small organizations are turning to public cloud platforms.

Organizations that succeed in addressing the trust gap can earn strong brand differentiation, customer loyalty, incentive to innovate, and greater confidence to accelerate their digital initiatives to capitalize on Asia Pacific’s burgeoning digital economy, said Keshav Dhakad, director & assistant general counsel – Corporate, External & Legal Affairs, Microsoft India.


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