Imagine this: Consumers hold full control over their personal information. Having all the insights into their data needed to make better life decisions, they leverage the power of data analytics to optimise each bit of their financial and personal life. Companies on the other hand, are always trustworthy. They provide transparent laws about how they store and use customers’ personal data, gaining their details through trust and true feedback. This can open the door to consumers’ minds and better decision making. They gain insights about what customers really need and how to fine tune their services for optimal resources utilisation and maximised revenue.

Sounds too good to be true? It’s an upcoming reality of PIMS – Personal Information Management Systems. The quote “customer is always right” will eventually substitute the “customer doesn’t know what he wants”. It’s finally time to make companies gain consumers’ trust and provide the most optimised service in place of trying to force or lure them into signing up to their products by means of exaggerated marketing techniques.

According to the new market of PIMS is emerging. It will revolutionize the way everybody perceives and uses personal data. The UK Government’s Consumer Empowerment strategy is bringing focus on helping identities manage their own personal information as well as control who is in possession of their data. The main goal of this idea is to revert the current system and to make the users the point of integration of their information. This will inevitably lead to better life decisions and life management. The industry on the other hand will gain clearer, cleaner and easier access to consumer data, avoiding the hard work of gaining consumer trust.

Making the change

The main downside of the current system is that only one side of the consumer-business relationship is empowered with data management tools – mainly the businesses. In order to fully make use of their data, the customer must be able to gather, store and analyse the information about themselves to realise what they really need.

The transfer of control will influence marketing strategies and targeting by opening access to richer, up-to-date information. Communication with the customer will improve alongside through opening a brand new type of users’ information channel and new trust-base data sharing.

For the banking sector it means entering the new opportunity to become banks for data as well as develop money management tools based on reacher customer description, helping customers more easily reach their financial goals.

The utility providers can finally leverage the broader consumers view to help in not only saving resources and energy but also manage all other aspects of their environment organisation to optimise household behaviour.

In retail, the new PIMS approach can help gather better insights of consumer spending pattern in order to recommend better products but also help in managing receipts, warranties or repairing services.

Telecom gains an opportunity to create better offers and introduce new information services based on a particularly network data reach.

The health and government sectors can shift to digital based practice facilitating cost reduction. This will provide better than ever condition management of patients with chronic diseases, keeping track of their appointments, advice and peer support. For all sectors, the new initiative will improve demand and supply, as well as negotiation between buyers and sellers.

personal data collection

Single customer view

In the first phase of the personal data collection, each company collects and stores the data about their customers in order to drive their own marketing, sales and various financial processes. The second step involves the individual storing and using his data for his own decisions and task management. The final phase interconnecting two latter ones builds sharing channels between companies and individuals to improve trust-based information flow. It will substitute incomplete insights with rich and real-time information.

How is it different than social channels, then? The main difference between these two is the user-centric approach to data integration. The vast change coming is the control given to the customer. It can build the trust in the brand by transparent information flow.

The challenge of the task is integration of various data sets and aspects, leading to creation of a single customer view. One of the major advantages of it is the opening of new opportunities for new applications and resource saving.

Access to the centralised personal information will not come free, though, according to Ctrl-Shift. The estimated cost per person per relationship per year would be £3-5. Following a very conservative estimate that each individual holds about 60 connections, it it is estimated to bring €1.5 billion size of a market!

Who’s PIMS?

There is already a bunch of companies that can be classified as PIMS. To mention a few interesting examples in different sectors:

  • billmonitor helps the users to make most out of their mobile tariffs, and avoid extra charges based in their phone use data. The customers save not only money (360 pound per year) but also rest assured that they are not wasting their money.
  • Bought By Many allows identities with similar insurance needs to group together and get special discounts or extra insurance coverage.
  • Cheap Energy Club continuously monitors the energy prices for their customers recommending customised and automated service switches for better money saving.
  • ClaimMyRefund offers automated claim refunds to the customers due to delayed train travel by linking passenger’s account with a journey monitoring tool.
  • MoneyDashboard provides the users with aggregation of their different bank accounts to provide better product recommendations via budgeting tools.
  • Intouch is a user-centric contact details updater allowing the users to provide or update contact details, automatically propagating updates to all the services they are connected with, in just one platform.

Initiatives like Intouch and other PIMS can change the way users trust companies by putting the control over personal information back into the consumer’s hands. It will open a whole new level of data analytics and customer service.

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