Business Resiliency

Trust Curve by the Numbers

By Mat Allen November 26, 2013

Trust.  TRUST.  Trust!  No matter how I write it, it just doesn’t resonate the same way the words money, gold, or profit do.  Should it though?  YES, it should!  I mean, after all, trust is the root of the free market and, as though that weren’t enough, it serves as the backbone of every great brand.  In keeping with my last entry, I think I’m coming danger-close to drinking the EMC Trust Kool-Aid though.  OK, I admit it; I took a pretty big gulp… I have the bright red mustache and shame of possibly being perceived as a shameless corporate shill to prove it.  Hang with me though… I’m also gonna prove we’re right.

trust curveBy now, you’ve probably seen the EMC press release announcing the results of the Global Trust in IT Survey.  This was a very broad and in-depth analysis of IT trust maturity levels and empirically reinforces what we have found our customers expect from us in the way of trust.  Basically, the study comprised 3,200 interviews including 1,600 IT and 1,600 business decision makers in 16 countries across 10 industry sectors and is intended to prove out a simple hypothesis – Our customers clearly view trust as a critical part of the infrastructure that they’re businesses are built on.

As is the case with any survey like this, we have a ton of data and there’s lots of analysis that will continue to be done.  You can bet that I’ll stretch this material for all its worth, for as long as I can.  OK, ok… I committed to avoid boring.  So I’ll cut to it – what’s the one thing you need to know about the results of the survey?

Hold on to your hats… there’s a clear linkage between the cost of failure and the perception of customer confidence / loyalty.  The reported average financial loss per company across three failure-oriented categories was as follows:losses

    • Downtime – $497,037
    • Security Breach – $860,273
    • Data Loss – $585,892

Nearly half, 45%, of respondents reported that their senior executives were not confident that their organization has adequate data protection, security, & IT availability.

Channeling my inner quant jockey – why is this a big deal?  Well, we now have the ability to start extrapolating out on the sensitivity discussion.  Basically, we can start pontificating about the relationship between dollars spent to prevent failure and the impact that those dollars appear to have on the hearts and minds of those that care.  Think – I want to buy trust (short of giving people money to say they trust you).  How much will it cost?

consequencesI’m gonna do a lot of “you do the math” points in future entries.  For now though, 32% of respondents said that one of the top three consequences of either unplanned downtime, a security breach or data loss at least once in the last 12 months was, loss of customer confidence / loyalty.  Another 39% of the respondents said that loss of revenue was one of the top three consequences as well.  I’m no mathematician, but one begets the other (code for – very high interclass coalition coefficient).  Basically, respondents are saying that it’s pretty damn expensive to have unplanned downtime, a security breach or data loss.

Conclusion:  So my crazy advanced, sophisticated, and complex conclusion, after having reviewed the results with a super computer and a team of data scientists and behavioral economists is, drum role please, you should avoid having unplanned downtime, a security breach or data loss.  It turns out that it’s pretty expensive and, oddly enough, customers don’t like it.  In fact, they like it so little, that if it happens too often, they’ll stop being a customer of yours and start becoming a customer of your competitors’.  Which also seems… well, bad.

Finally, if you are like me, and love snappy infographics, we’ve developed a pretty great one.  Check it.

Trust Curve Infographic

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