- Prioritizing employee data privacy is a competitive edge for organizations.
- Competitive advantages include attracting and retaining talent, improving employee productivity and engagement, and enhancing reputation and brand quality.
- External Data Privacy (EDP) solutions like Privacy Bee can help organizations achieve these competitive advantages.
- Protecting employee data privacy is essential to the reputation of any organization and demonstrates a commitment to protecting sensitive external data.
The Competitive Advantage of Prioritizing Data Privacy
Exposed employee Personally Identifiable Information (PII) has led to more social engineering and spear phishing attacks on organizations. As such, organizations that adopt a solution reducing employee PII and prioritizing employee data privacy gain a competitive advantage .
It is vital to pause and ensure that this point is understood: the proliferation of publically available PII has sharply increased attacks on individuals and organizations.
Despite this, some organizations follow a behavior pattern akin to the “wash, rinse, repeat” instructions on a shampoo bottle.
The pattern goes like this:
- Facing internal or external pressures to safeguard data privacy.
- Making a poor or misguided investment in security and/or experiencing an attack.
- More pressure to protect data privacy.
Many organizations struggle to adapt their security tactic, hence why prioritizing data privacy is a competitive advantage in the first place.
This article delves into the advantages of prioritizing data privacy and how organizations can leverage the benefits to achieve business success.
Specifically, the article will focus on employee data, as there is a significant relationship between employee PII and organizational risk.
Employee Data Privacy: The New Competitive Advantage
Prioritizing employee data privacy results in several advantages for organizations. Among them:
Attracting and Retaining Talent
Job seekers’ attitudes about a company’s commitment to data privacy are changing. Now more than ever, workers value a commitment to data privacy.
For example, nearly 70% of job seekers state that a company’s commitment to data privacy impacts their decision to accept a job offer.
The ability to attract and retain talent will take on a new level of importance, as experts predict a tighter labor market until at least 2030.
Building Employee Trust
Research shows that emphasizing privacy and data protection improves employee morale and job satisfaction. Consequently, more employees trust their employers to look out for their best interests.
79% of employees state that their employer should protect their personal information, and 82% state that it is essential to their overall job satisfaction .
Improving Employee Productivity and Engagement
Per a study by Personnel Review, even a “small” privacy-related distraction (e.g., unwanted e-mails, phone calls, or recruitment messages) reduced job performance by about 33% .
Enhancing Reputation and Brand Quality
Prioritizing employee data privacy shows a firm’s commitment to ethical business. The result of this commitment is an enhanced reputation and brand image.
Moreover, research repeatedly shows the innate relationship between privacy reputation and the perception of brand quality.
Per a study published in the Journal of Business Research, a one-point increase (e.g., on a 1-10 scale) in an organization’s privacy reputation score led to a 1/3 unit increase in a person’s willingness to engage with the organization .
How EDP Achieves Competitive Advantage
Organizations that adopt data privacy solutions, such as Privacy Bee, are well-positioned to gain a competitive advantage. This is because exposed PII is a primary factor in modern threats organizations face, and EDP is one of the few methods of proactively managing this risk. Moreover, there are relatively few enterprises that are even aware of EDP.
Consequently, the benefits offered by EDP solutions translate directly into advantages over competitors.
Each organization has a unique reason for integrating an EDP solution; however, leaders should also be aware of the potential secondary benefits provided by these features and services.
Compliance with Data Privacy Regulations
EDP solutions like Privacy Bee provides organizations with a competitive advantage by helping them comply with data privacy regulations. Organizations may avoid costly noncompliance penalties by scanning, removing, and monitoring employee PII from external sources.
Showing commitment to data privacy by investing in EDP is a true advantage that can help an organization protect its reputation and financial well-being.
Mitigating Data Breach Risk
EDP’s competitive advantage in mitigating data breach risk is significant, especially in cost savings. Consider the following:
- The average cost of a data breach in the US is approximately $9.5 million.
- Exposed PII enables more than 60% of data breaches. 
EDP solutions like Privacy Bee that monitor and eliminate employee PII from external sources significantly reduce an organization’s digital footprint. As a result, the risk of a data breach—and its massive costs—decreases.
Increased Loyalty and Trust
Customers and stakeholders are increasingly concerned about data privacy and are likelier to do business with companies that prioritize it. Organizations that invest in EDP gain an immediate competitive advantage over enterprises that do not prioritize this vital security element.
Implementing EDP demonstrates a commitment to protecting sensitive external data immediately and signals that privacy is taken seriously. As a result, the organization builds stronger relationships and a more functionally solid enterprise.
Protecting Brand Reputation
Ensuring employee data privacy is a crucial legal and ethical obligation for any organization’s reputation. As digital technology expands, data breaches have become more frequent and severely impact an organization’s image if they do not adequately protect its assets. In addition, a data breach or other cyberattack exposes the enterprise to potential legal consequences, harms its brand, and erodes trust.
 Deloitte. (2019, February 11). Data privacy as a strategic priority. Deloitte US | Audit, Consulting, Advisory, and Tax Services and Solutions. https://www2.deloitte.com/us/en/pages/advisory/articles/data-privacy-as-a-strategic-priority.html
 Cisco. (2021). The Impact of Privacy on Employee Experience.
 Mishra, J., & Mohanty, R. P. (2019). Personal privacy invasion at the workplace and employee performance: The mediating role of job-related affective well-being. Personnel Review, 48(1), 215-233. doi:10.1108/PR-03-2017-0084.
 LaLonde, R. J., Bazarova, N. N., & McKnight, D. H. (2021). The impact of online privacy concerns on e-commerce: A descriptive longitudinal study. Journal of Business Research, 123, 78-86. doi: 10.1016/j.jbusres.2021.03.006