The Benefits of a GDPR Gap Analysis

Are you thinking of conducting a GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) gap analysis but are unsure of the benefits it will bring?

There are several reasons you might be considering a gap analysis. You might wish to determine whether your organisation has implemented certain policies and processes necessary to complete data processing activities.

Alternatively, you might want to know how to improve those systems or to find out whether the policies are being followed when data is processed.

Whatever the reason, a gap analysis is essential for ensuring an organisation’s long-term success and should form a crucial part of their regulatory compliance practices.

Why are GDPR gap analyses important?

A GDPR gap analysis provides an accurate snapshot of an organisation’s GDPR compliance posture at one moment in time. It enables organisations to look at their processes in their entirety, assessing the way personal data is processed, stored and used.

It can also be used to look at a particular business function, product or process – providing a specific assessment of one part of an organisation’s processes.

The assessment highlights anything that falls short of the GDPR’s compliance requirements. It might, for example, identify personal data that’s improperly protected, processed without a lawful basis, or that has been disposed of inadequately.

But a gap analysis doesn’t only highlight what’s wrong. It also gives organisations an action plan on how to improve compliance across its business.

An effective assessment highlights data protection risks and the appropriate steps to address them. It also pinpoints areas of immediate attention as part of a high-level plan for achieving full compliance.

The gap analysis process

Although organisations can complete a gap analysis internally, the process works best when conducted by impartial experts. They will provide a fresh look at the organisation’s systems and processes, without preconceived ideas about why something is being done the way it is.

With DQM GRC’s Gap Analysis service, our team of experts will work with you remotely or in person to conduct the assessment.

We’ll interview your team to establish the maturity of your compliance activities against more than 350 control areas.

These controls are defined according to the ICO’s (Information Commissioner’s Office) audit framework and other requirements, such as the PCI DSS (Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard) if they apply to you.

After completing the assessment, we will present our findings, giving you the opportunity to ask questions and learn more about the results. We’ll also deliver a report highlighting what you’re doing well and where you should focus your compliance activities.

Our assessment covers every aspect of the GDPR, including:

  • Governance

Are there mechanisms in place to ensure data protection accountability, responsibility, policies, procedures, performance measurement controls and reporting?

  • Privacy by design

Has data protection by design has been incorporated into systems, services, products and/or processes?

  • Roles and responsibilities

Have appropriate roles and responsibilities been defined and established, and have relevant personnel received training?

  • Scope of compliance

Has the geographical and material scope of the GDPR compliance been defined?

  • Risk management

Have information-specific risks been integrated into corporate risk management, and have risks to the rights and freedoms of data subjects been addressed?

  • DPO (data protection officer)

Is the organisation required to appoint a DPO, and if so, does the person fulfilling the duties qualified and acting without a conflict of interest?

  • Data subject rights

Have processes been implemented to facilitate and respond to data subjects exercising their rights under the GDPR and DPA (Data Protection Act) 2018?

  • ISMS (information security management system)

Have information-specific risks been incorporated into corporate risk management, and have risks to the rights and freedoms of data subjects been addressed?

Post assessment the DQM GRC team can also assist you with remediation and implementation actions to help accelerate your compliance program and provide you with best practice insight.

Get started with your GDPR Gap Analysis

You can find out more about our GDPR Gap Analysis service by speaking to one of our experts today.

We specialise in working with large or complex organisations, helping them to understand how to apply the GDPR to their business practices, although we can also support smaller firms.

Our consultants are on hand to assess your current practices, understand your requirements, and complete a gap analysis with the help of our GDPR RADAR™ tool, which provides visual guides to support our assessment.


  • Luke Irwin

    Luke Irwin is a former writer for DQM GRC. He has a master's degree in Critical Theory and Cultural Studies, specialising in aesthetics and technology.

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