Friday, Apr 19 2019

Employee Tracking Is on the Rise but Employees Aren't Very Bothered

Written by

Employee Tracking is on the Rise but Employees Arent Very Bothered


Companies have been using technology to monitor their employees’ activities for decades, but the level of tracking has increased dramatically over recent. Email can easily be scanned by IT, computer logs are saved for future review, and certain assets have GPS trackers enabled to keep an eye on their whereabouts. Add in social media reviews, text message scans, and reviews of meeting invites to see who attended, and companies can easily keep tabs on their workers.

However, while employee tracking seems to be on the rise, workers don’t appear to be incredibly concerned. This may come as a surprise in an age where privacy scandals continue to make headlines and legislation like the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) becomes more common.

While a corporate “Big Brother” may seem scary on the surface, employees aren’t treating it as such. If you are wondering why, here’s what you need to know.

Employees May Not Fully Understand the Situation

Often, workers are aware that their employer can monitor certain activities. For example, nearly every employee with a company-issued email knows the organization may review their messages. The reason they know is because it is clearly listed in company policies.

However, while there may be basic intellectual awareness that an employer could track their activities through various mechanisms, many employees don’t know how often this does or does not occur. As long as an organization can prove that their choice to review employee communications or whereabouts were based on legitimate concerns, they are largely in the clear legally. As a result, they may be taking a look more often that employees realize, particularly since such reviews are not widely discussed when they occur.


Monitoring as a Security Measure

One method that can increase employee acceptance of being tracked is touting it as a security measure. For instance, monitoring the position of a company-owned smartphone by tapping into the GPS through a mobile device management (MDM) solution could be justified by the organization as a means to ensure critical data doesn’t end up in the wrong hands. If the business handles sensitive information, many workers will understand the base reasoning, so they don’t focus on the fact that, by tracking the device, the company can see where they are too.


The Impact of a Positive Culture

When employees trust their employer, they aren’t going to be as concerned about monitoring. If an organization is viewed as being respectful to their workers, staff members aren’t going to be as wary of the company’s data collection methods.

This is especially true for Millennial and Gen Z professionals who grew up as digital natives. Disclosing certain personal details publicly on social media isn’t uncommon for these generations. Additionally, they are aware that many companies monitor their actions, making the concept seem practically normal.

In contrast, if there is a significant amount of distrust in the workplace, the monitoring activities may be viewed in a negative light. Essentially, it alters the perceived context of the situation, influencing how employees see the tracking.


Find Talented Team Members with the Help of The Armada Group!

While not all employees will be comfortable with tracking, regardless of the company’s culture, it is largely an accepted premise today and will probably remain as such in the future. If you would like to know more, the staff at The Armada Group wants to hear from you. Contact us to speak with a member of our knowledgeable team today and see how our expertise can benefit you.