Washington Direct Mail gains ISO27001 accreditation

Posted: June 28, 2018

Categorised in: News

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Our mailing house has become one of the very few direct mail companies in the UK to achieve ISO27001 for data privacy and protection, and we couldn’t be prouder of the team. In our post-GDPR world, we’ve invested time and money in digital printing and envelope enclosing technology to ensure we received the accreditation. Our family-run mailing company – founded back in 1983 – can now compete on a level playing field with UK-wide print management and other direct mail companies.

As part of our mailhouse and marketing campaign fulfilment offering, we provide a range of core services such as personalised direct mail, litho and variable digital printing, data cleansing, mail fulfilment, dispatch and response handling.

Over the past two years, we have been working towards the ISO27001 accreditation, perfectly coinciding it with the recently launched General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) – the legislation that places strict requirements on all companies regarding how they hold and use data. Most significantly, as long as a level of ‘legitimate interest’ can be demonstrated by either the sender or for the reader, then direct mail does not require GDPR opt-in as email marketing campaigns do today. You can read more on GDPR and direct mail marketing here.

letter filling team

What is ISO27001?

ISO27001 is the international standard, outlining the best practice for an ISMS (information security management system). The accreditation states that the company is following the practice outlined. The company also provides an independent, expert verification that information security is managed in line with international best practice and business objectives.

In addition to our latest accreditation, we also hold certification for ISO9001 (quality management), ISO14001 (environmental management) and ISO18001 (occupational health and safety).

Our Managing Director, Lynn Beasley, said: “We’re a small, agile, SME with a very strong team culture. We’re also extremely ambitious and want to be the very best at everything that we do. By gaining ISO27001 accreditation, we are reaffirming to our existing clients that they can have total confidence in the work that we do for them, and we are also positioning ourselves for huge opportunities in new markets. Essentially, we are future-proofing the business.

We are one of the very few firms in the UK direct mail industry to gain this standard. We can now compete against major UK global print and mailing companies. We believe we can clearly differentiate ourselves in this new arena. As an SME, we are fleet-of-foot, highly responsive and offer flexible pricing structures.  Many of our major UK competitors will simply struggle to match us on many of these as they’re geared up for vast volumes that don’t change very often. Alternatively, they’re located in areas of the country such as the South East of the UK that have huge in-built overheads.”

As a UK mailing house, we’ve seen a definite U-turn over the years when it comes to direct mail marketing, as highlighted in the Royal Mail Market Reach 2017 survey. A huge 70% of respondents prefer to be contacted via direct mail, feeling more valued when approached in this way as opposed to email marketing. This number was up by 53% from 2013, with 70% also stating that mail gives those receiving a better impression of the brand. In comparison, only 48% trust the message in emails campaigns.

Our Technical Director, Jon Beasley, stated that: “At a time when many businesses are worried about the implications of GDPR with regards to the miss-handling of data, they can be assured that the information we send out on their behalf is totally secure. While email marketing is very much under the microscope when it comes to GDPR, direct mail provides an opt-out for businesses under the criteria of ‘legitimate interest'”.

Not only have we achieved this accreditation, but we’ve also got some new starters joining the WDM family. Our Compliance Manager, Steve Evans. has been brought in to ensure we maintain our industry standards, oversee compliance and bid writing. You’ll be seeing a lot more of Steve in the future.

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