Part 10 of 10 in our Complete Guide to Secure Remote Access in Retail.
Retail operations go far beyond a credit card swipe, especially in today’s global economy and rise in Internet of Things (IoT). Retailers rely on a vast network of users, devices, networks, vendors, and software tools to process payments, store data, and effectively manage retail operations.
With the significant amount of sensitive information passing through a retail network, including payment card data and personal information, it’s essential that retailers be vigilant in securing every layer of their POS system and other technology that may be vulnerable to cyberthreats.
That’s where remote access comes in. With secure remote access solutions, retailers not only improve security, but can be more agile, efficient, and even save money by choosing a consolidated, fully compliant tool that offers superior protection.
While security and information officers and IT professionals understand the value of remote access, especially for defending against data breaches, it can sometimes be difficult to communicate that same value to those making budget decisions.
Value is just about generating more revenue, but about mitigating risks to prevent loss of sales, customers, and valuable data. According to the IBM 2019 Cost of a Data Breach Report, the average cost of a data breach was $3.92 million, and the average time to identify it was 206 days. That’s a significant amount of time lost, which means more time and money spent to recover.
Thankfully, with the right remote access solutions, the steep costs of data breaches can be mitigated to keep budgets in the black and increase ROI.
The big questions are what’s the ROI on remote access and is it worth the investment, and what are the benefits for retailers of investing in comprehensive remote access software?
We know one thing for sure: remote access is definitely worth the investment. To show you how and why, we’ve put together the infographic below to see how remote access ROI is calculated, and valuable data about how you can generate cost savings while maintaining the utmost security with one, simple tool. We also offer a free custom ROI calculation to explore your unique business needs.
What to Consider When Calculating Remote Access ROI
Remote access ROI has to be something you can tangibly show. Simply stating that it can make your retail POS system safer may not be enough to spur a large investment in new software.
To really dig deep and uncover the true value of remote access, start by considering the following in regard to your business’s operations:
- Number of hours spent traveling to troubleshoot and/or assist with network issues
- Number of remote access tools your organization is using
- Which regulatory guidelines you have to adhere to
- Number of vendors your organization partners with
- Types of devices and how many your organization uses
- Do you use legacy software?
How to Calculate Remote Access ROI
There are many different formulas and data that can be used to calculate ROI, so we’ve put together a list of a few common terms used when looking at costs and ROI:
- Exposure Factor (EF): Percentage of loss when an event occurs
- Single Loss Expectancy (SLE): Specific dollar amount assigned to the event if it occurs calculated by ASSET VALUE x EXPOSURE FACTOR (EF) = SLE
- Annual Rate of Occurrence (ARO): Estimate frequency at which an event could occur
- Annual Loss Expectancy (ALE): Calculated by SLE x ARO = ALE
The following basic formula will help to determine whether or not remote access investment is worthwhile. Use the following formula to assist:
ROI = Gain from investment – Cost of investment
Cost of investment
The gains from your remote access investment are a combination of reducing costs, greater business agility, and mitigating risks. If your remote access solutions provide those three key benefits, your ROI is likely going to be improved.
Gains from Remote Access Investment
A significant ROI for remote access tools begins with having enough remote support to reduce the amount of time and money spent resolving issues. Comprehensive remote access tools offer technicians and administrators secure access to a retailer’s network so they can provide necessary support where it’s needed.
To reduce costs associated with troubleshooting, your organization needs to:
- Reduce incident diagnosis time
- Reduce on-site service trips by technicians
- Improve efficacy when service trips are necessary
Impero Connect has proven to be an effective remote access solution by reducing the time to diagnosis an issue by 18 percent and reducing on-site service trips by 9 percent. That works out to saving $25,577.16 per 1000 machines every year.
Retailers are constantly needing to manage their networks, especially those who run global operations. When a retailer is agile, allocate time to necessary resources, rather than spend unnecessary time on administrative costs or help desk inquiries–and remote access software can help.
To discover how agile your organization is, consider how many hours per year your help desk technicians and administrative staff are saving by using remote access tools.
The remote access ROI can be quite significant. Impero has found that mid-size retailers spend less than $20 per device per year when using our Remote Control software. Of course, the number of devices you use will factor into your overall ROI, but that can add up quickly to produce a fairly robust retail ROI.
One of the most important reasons for remote access is to mitigate the risk of a data breach or other cybersecurity threats.
Small to medium-sized businesses are at particular risk of a data breach. One study from the Ponemon Institute showed that 58 percent of respondents claimed to experience a data breach in 2018. And the cost of data breaches and cyberattacks was an average of $1.43 million. That’s significant for a small business.
While data breaches cost organizations millions of dollars every year, it’s not just in lost sales or customers, but from lack of compliance.
Regulations are put in place by governmental bodies to protect all stakeholders involved in retail transactions, from the customers themselves, to vendors, to your organization. If a retailer is found to be in violation, they can be fined accordingly.
Both PCI DSS and GDPR offer a strict set of guidelines to protect payment card data and consumers. PCI DSS applies to the United States, while GDPR applies to the European Union (EU).
Yet, with the global economy, many retailers find that they need to remain compliant with multiple governing bodies, which can be a tedious task. The GDPR fines can be up to €20 million, or 4 percent of the organization’s worldwide annual revenue.
With remote access tools that exceed compliance standards, retailers have confidence that one aspect of their business is compliant, and potentially avoid extra costs associated with violations, thus increasing remote access ROI.
Cost of Remote Access Investment
After you’ve figured out your organization’s gains from investing in remote access software, you want to consider what it actually costs. This typically includes three main areas:
In our example, for a company looking to implement secure remote access for 1,000 POS machines, the average cost per POS device per year comes out to be $16.49. This is accounting for the subscription host cost, the subscription guest cost, security server, professional installation services, and the cost associated with the number of hours it takes to set up the secure remote access tools.
Secure Retail Environment with Impero Connect
Remote access ROI goes beyond simple gains vs. cost. By investing in a secure remote access solution like Impero Connect, you can also:
- Reduce administrative overhead
- Improve employee satisfaction
- Be prepared for compliance auditing
- Improve customer experience
- Effectively execute service level agreements (SLAs)
Every retailer is different based on their size, industry, and region, but one thing remains: investing in Impero Connect software will offer the security and efficiency your business needs to increase ROI and run smoothly. Check out a free trial to learn more about how Impero can help improve retail control solutions and save you money.