Good Law, Bad Consequences — How GDPR Could Slow Down MBA Careers Around The Globe

Shutterstock

In May 2018 the European Union – including the slowly exiting United Kingdom – will introduce the new General Data Protection Regulations, or GDPR for short. The original idea behind the new law was to give EU citizens more control over the personal data that organizations of all shapes and sizes collect about them. And consequently slow down what seems to be an inexorable slide towards the sort of dystopia depicted in Dave Eggers’ The Circle (try reading the book or catching the film version on Netflix if you fancy a few sleepless nights).

Given that the regulations emanate from Europe, many in the rest of the world have dismissed them as a regional problem. A survey by NTT Security, for example, found that around three quarters of U.S. businesses are ignoring GDPR, assuming that it simply doesn’t apply to them. But they’ll need to think again, because the new law will actually cover anyone from anywhere who is dealing with an EU citizen or a non-EU citizen based within the Union’s borders. And falling foul of the rules will be costly. Fines for non-compliance can, in the worst case, range up to €20 million or 4{dbfcf201b6c5c222e259d4f2fe846e83faab30e5cf4cea18302fdf949135a1d7} of global annual turnover, whichever is greater.

For business schools, with their massive databases of students, potential students and, of course, alumni, this is obviously going to pose a challenge, wherever they are based. And in North America, where the alumni of the top schools can be an enormously valuable source of ongoing income through donations, this could be a major headache. Europeans who have returned home or even gone off to far flung corners of the globe will need to be contacted to secure consent to hold data (old consent becomes useless as of May 25th), as well as U.S. or other alumni who have taken up either long or short term residence within the Union.

Few, if any schools seem particularly keen to discuss in any detail exactly what they are doing to deal with the demands of the new regulations but there needs to be some serious thinking and activity going on behind the scenes to ensure that the aforementioned databases can stay in place.

However, if maintaining their own stores of personal data is becoming difficult enough it seems that there could be another, almost certainly unintended consequence of GDPR that schools need to worry about. Namely the potential slowing down of the careers of MBAs and other business school graduates across the world.

Unless you have chosen to go to business school to pursue the startup route then the chances are that you are the sort of ambitious type looking to accelerate your climb up the corporate career ladder. And to make sure that your career achieves its full potential then you are likely looking at making several significant moves before you can hit the golf course or the beach. You will need help in effecting this, which explains why the careers area of the Wharton School’s website clearly states, “Connecting with executive recruiters is a critical component to your long-term career success.”

However, according to a report from GatedTalent, a GDPR compliance specialist for the international search sector, that connection might be distinctly more difficult after May 2018. According to the survey of over 350 executive search firms, many of them are worried and unclear about how they will keep in touch with professional and executives in the future. The general feeling seems to be that, to be completely safe from eye-watering fines, head hunters may need to refresh all the data they hold – a massive enterprise involving contacting and engaging with potentially hundreds of thousands of candidates. And until this can be done effectively many business school graduates risk simply disappearing off the radar and finding that the phone which regularly used to ring with suggestions of interesting new roles has gone ominously quiet.

Original article source: https://www.forbes.com/sites/mattsymonds/2017/11/27/good-law-bad-consequences-how-gdpr-could-slow-down-mba-careers-around-the-globe/

Sharing is caring!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *