Instant messaging apps are used by millions of people daily. They mimic verbal conversations, offering a quick and easy way to communicate. However, as of late last year, several big banks such as Deutsche Bank, Citigroup, Barclays, and UBS were considering banning IM. The bans are “not a response to any ‘smoking gun,’ but more to a growing alarm around mistaken or misinterpreted off-the-cuff trader comments,” banking sources claim.
With multi-million dollar non-compliance fines looming over regulated businesses, it’s easy to understand why decision-makers are saying no, flat-out, to IM. But are they throwing the baby out with the bathwater? What impact will these choices have on productivity? It’s incalculable, really.
Target the Problems
It’s unfortunate to think that businesses (that rely on split-second decisions to increase profits) would avoid using a tool that allows them near-instant communication. For them, seconds can literally translate into millions of dollars lost or won. IM tools allow employees and clients to communicate at the speed of thought to increase productivity and close deals faster. However, they have some genuine fears around security and compliance.
Communications must be secure on the back-end because security isn’t always top-of-mind for employees. For them, it’s about getting the job done quickly, and the trend is to share information over unsecure consumer apps like WhatsApp and Skype. Hackers are using these apps to get into big businesses for their money and data. Any information that’s leaked erodes client trust and can be used to the advantage of competitors. If you use IM in your enterprise, you must make sure that all data behind the firewall and in transit is wrapped in multiple layers of security. Using IM apps that are built for business will help ensure that corporate data remains secure.
Regulated industries have a lot of rules around communications. Many require the recording and logging of conversations for auditing purposes. These checks are in place to ensure the integrity of business, but they can be a nightmare for IT. Deploy IM apps that can be controlled by your IT department so that recording and logging is automatic and easily managed. That way, you can rest easy knowing you’re playing by the rules.
IM apps that are built for business can provide the speed and ease you want, with the security and compliance features you need.