Activity tracker systems have become increasingly used in organizations. These systems record all the actions that are made by employees on their office computers. By implementing this functionality, it assists an organization to reduce any wastage of work time and resources and saves system from infection/malware.
With proper use of these systems, work productivity of employees is expected to improve significantly. However, do companies really implement such systems to monitor computers, break time and emotions of employees? If it is true, then it can be a concern for employees to some extent.
What all is tracked by employee monitoring software?
So, now the question arises that What, Why and How employees are being monitored at the workplace. There are companies who take screenshots of the work of employees on a regular basis. They evaluate web usage, keystrokes and even capture their photograph at the desks via webcams. In a few companies, employees are fitted with badges. These badges track the location and monitors voice tone.
It helps in identifying how frequently they converse in meetings and with whom do they converse and the duration for which they converse. Chinese firms use sensors in hats and helmets to scan brainwaves of workers to detect stress, fatigue, loss of attention, and emotional state like anger.
This kind of technological use has legitimate safety uses that prevent any serious repercussions at the workplace. It prevents sudden collapse of workers while performing their duties at the job place. There are cellphone applications that get paired with the GPS of the employee’s phone to enable its location to get tracked.
Impact of employee monitoring
Employees have been supervised regularly and continuously while they are at work. Firms use technology to accomplish this purpose. According to André Spicer, a professor at Cass Business School in organizational behavior, employee monitoring devices captures things that were not being captured in the past. Some of these things are the number of keystrokes that people are taking, what actually are they viewing on the screen of the device at workplace, what type of language is being used etc.
Nowadays surveillance is not just limited to workplace, it even follows outside the office. Employers can use the webcam of computer to check where you are at any given moment. There needs to be a justification to perform such monitoring. It is very much necessary to notify employees before performing such supervision.
How legal is it?
In the UK, it is legal for employers to supervise the activities of their employee. It is completely ethical to let them know which websites are accessed by their employees during their work timings. However, it is the duty of employers to inform employees that the device on which they are working is getting monitored. These devices can be partly or completely assigned to the employee in relation to the job. This act of supervising online activity of the employees has to be clearly mentioned in the social media policy of the firm.
Positive impact of surveillance
Surveillance also has positive use that are made in the best interest of the employees. It is essential as well as legally needed in firms especially those that operate in the medical and financial sector. Monitoring of employees is one of the most effective means to eliminate insider trading. It is also helpful in preventing bullying and harassment. It roots out discrimination and bias at the workplace. With this software installed in the companies, employees at all levels will behave in a more professional manner. Work Examiner software assists company to safeguard their critical data from employees with an intent of stealing. Some of the features offered by this software in an organization are:
- Robust computer monitoring software
- Monitoring of employee’s PCs and keystrokes entered by the user in the real time basis
- Tracks time and content of web surfing time
- Analyze web usage, work time, and activities performed on computer
- It works on more than twenty devices easily
- Monitors PC
- Remote computer monitoring
Technological firms are coming up with several intrusive and bizarre ways to supervise workforces. It is thought that these monitoring activities invades the privacy of employees but it also has a positive impact that provides a safe and secure work environment to employees.