Over the years, employee monitoring tools have improved by leaps and bounds. In fact nowadays It is easy to monitor the activities of employees in great depth, gain insights into their workflow, and capture tons of useful data.
However despite its many benefits, many people still aren’t sold – and some are outright skeptical about employee monitoring. That is partly due to misconceptions, such as some myths debunked by Sarah Lowenstein in her latest article.
If you want to really understand both the pros and cons of employee monitoring – here’s what you need to know:
Pro: Measure Productivity
Knowing how productive employees are is invaluable to any business. It provides a baseline that you can use to evaluate the performance of your employees, identify issues, and come up with potential improvements.
Tracking the activity of employees using Controlio will give you the means to empirically measure productivity. It will let you monitor the time employees spend working, the apps that they use, the tasks they work on, and much more. The data you obtain can then be correlated with other key performance indicators (KPIs) to accurately measure the overall productivity of employees.
On top of that, the fact that employees know they are being monitored will normally improve productivity all by itself too.
Pro: Provides ‘Fairness’
Employee monitoring can actually keep things fair – both for employers as well as employees. The data from monitoring software employers removes any ambiguity, so will employees won’t have to ‘defend themselves’ if tasks take a long time due to circumstances that are beyond their control.
At the same time employers will have hard numbers to use when making decisions and can demonstrate exactly when and how employees fall short or violate any rules. In the case of Controlio you can even compare the productivity rates of different employees, or see how different websites or programs affect it.
Make no mistake, tracking employees is very cost-effective – in several different ways. Not only will you get more bang for your buck if you increase productivity, but you can also reduce time wastage, and identify workflow bottlenecks.
The data you obtain can even help you to identify which apps or products are useful and which ones aren’t – so you can optimize your expenditure.
Pro: Improve Security and Privacy
Last but not least, employee monitoring is a very good way to improve the security and privacy of your data. Keeping tabs on your employees will help you to watch for unauthorized access attempts, file transfers, and other potential breaches.
In some cases it may even help to ensure compliance with laws or regulatory standards, and could help with forensics as well.
Con: Privacy Concerns
Employees often feel that monitoring is invasive, and to be honest there are many potential privacy issues involved. The way around this issue is simple however: Avoid monitoring any personal information unless absolutely necessary.
As a rule of thumb you should always be able to justify why you need to monitor certain activities – and also how you will protect the privacy of your employees.
Con: Trust Issues
Another equally pressing concern with employee monitoring is trust. When employees learn they are being monitored, they’ll feel you are spying on them because you don’t trust them to do their jobs.
The way around this issue is to be open and explain everything up front. Make sure you notify your employees about the software that you’re using, and come up with a standardized policy that details exactly how, when, and why it will be used.
By now you should see how monitoring employees can have a big impact on your business. Of course it does have both pros and cons, but the key is to make sure you use it in such a way that you are able to benefit from its advantages without suffering from its drawbacks.