by Alex Palmer | March 28, 2017
The gift card landscape is changing fast, and National Gift Card Corp. (NGC) has been moving fast to stay a step ahead. The fulfillment company for incentive and loyalty gift card programs has made a pair of executive changes in the past two weeks, appointing Brian Dreger as its new chief information officer (overseeing the organization's gift card security practices and technology) on March 16, and Pat Doczi as its new director of North American operations on March 24. Incentive spoke with Doczi about his new role and where NGC and the gift card industry in general is heading.

Incentive: Congratulations on the new role. What will your focus be in this new position?

Doczi: My main focus is the day-to-day operations here at National Gift Card. My priority is customer satisfaction, and that starts with the quality of the product that goes out to our customers -- making sure it gets to them in a timely manner and that they can get that product to their end user. We hear from both customers and end users that when they have enough points, they want to redeem them and use their card right away.

So our main focus is how we keep up our high-quality standards but meet those customers' needs in terms of the speed in which we get them their rewards. 

One of my priorities here is working with our processes internally, all our relationships, and all the cards we fulfill -- finding a way to make those coincide and satisfy the customer's needs.

Incentive: What is NGC working on that has you especially excited about this work and the gift card industry more generally?

Doczi: One of the biggest things that's exciting us and continues to grow in this space is digital gift cards. We have a real-time API [software interface] that allows the customer to connect straight to merchants' platforms so recipients can redeem their points instantly -- within seconds they get their iTunes code or Amazon code. That's something we see growing and that we are trying to emphasize to clients: If you want instant redemption, [using the real-time API] is the way to go, especially with growing interest, especially from Millennials, in having everything right away. They don't need the plastic card at all, but can just get that code and activate it.

Incentive: Speaking of digital gift cards, security continues to be a top concern for incentive planners. How is NGC addressing this and how has it evolved?

Doczi: In our industry, security is now at the top of the list for everybody. It's still a new, always changing thing, so we're going through all the current practices and making sure we're aligned with the industry. That means verifying IP addresses, that data-retention policies are in place (where we only keep a customer's information for a certain amount of time), that we have a password policy in place where everyone must have a token to log in to their computer. It's evolving and much of it is still kind of new, in this era where criminals are getting access to information and they never had before. But we're staying a step ahead.