July is a good month to pause the conversation about the payments and security markets and instead take a look inward at how the Secure Technology Alliance is serving our members’ needs. In this month’s member bulletin, I look at the feedback we received from our annual member survey, which provides an opportunity to ask our members what matters most to them and how the Alliance organization serves those interests.
Our member satisfaction rating rose to 87.3 (on a scale of 0 to 100), higher than the 85.6 score in 2018, and the overall value and satisfaction with Alliance activities was higher at 3.76 in 2018, compared to 3.67 the previous year. Both of these measures are indicators that we are meeting our members’ expectations and delivering increased value year over year, despite some dramatic shifts in the market impacting many of our most active member organizations. Satisfaction is highest for members who are active in our industry councils, with higher ratings from members of the Mobile, Payments and Transportation Councils, and from those members who attend Alliance conferences like the annual Payments Summit. Our government membership scored the highest satisfaction level at 91.3, which reflects positively on the Alliance’s ability to engage the government adopters of payments technology (transportation agencies) and security technology (federal government agencies) in productive relationships with technology suppliers and security providers. The Transportation Council is delivering high satisfaction to its members through a cross-organization project with the U.S. Payments Forum on EMV contactless open loop payments acceptance in transit and the newest council-led payments initiative involving Mobility as a Service (MaaS).
Some of the most valuable feedback comes from the open-ended questions asking members what they value most about the Alliance. When asked about the educational value of membership, we received responses such as:
- Insightful white papers
- Helps with adoption of best practices
- Exposure to ground-breaking technologies and trends
- Critical market intelligence
- Great destination for educational resources, great conferences, and STA conferences offer the best content
When asked about collaboration opportunities, we received feedback that opportunities to collaborate and share experiences were most valued, and our mission matches a requirement for stakeholders to collaborate and share knowledge. Additional general comments:
- Excellent staff support and professionalism
- Invaluable resource for networking, education and activities
- Secure Technology Alliance has helped to boost my career and keep me abreast of relevant trends
The last category of open-ended responses from the survey that I want to share has to do with the future direction for the organization. The Secure Technology Alliance is a little more than two years into its rebranding from the Smart Card Alliance and expanded mission beyond smart cards. We’re now involved in newer security areas like tokenization, embedded security, IoT, machine learning, and digital authentication. Our members told us the most important issues in our future are:
- Mobile identity
- Digital identity
- Mobile payments/commerce
- Secure Remote Commerce, EMV 3DS and artificial intelligence
- Card-not-present solutions
- Biometrics solutions
- Contactless cards
- Mobility as a service (MaaS) payments convergence
I want to thank all our members who took the time to complete the survey and provide this important feedback. The Alliance staff and I strive to make every individual and every organization member proud to be associated with the Alliance. We also want members to challenge themselves and their industry colleagues to do more to enable secure authentication, facilitate safe commerce, and stimulate the adoption of connected digital solutions based on secure chip and other technologies and systems needed to protect privacy and personal data.