With businesses shifting largely to remote operations, some companies are now using technology to determine if their employees are actually staying active while on the clock. There is an important discussion being had about whether this type of monitoring, however, violates an employees’ right to privacy.

While there is something to be said for employee privacy, it must also be noted that monitoring employee activity is not a new concept nor is it a controversial one. Businesses need to monitor their networks anyway, and they have done so for a long time to ensure both security and productivity. It’s not done to spy on employees or guarantee productivity, but primarily for the security benefits that it brings.

It is possible for employers to go too far with this practice, though, and even some debate as to what “too far” really means. In particular, the COVID-19 pandemic has brought about a renewed conversation about monitoring employees while working remotely. Employers want to know how their employees are using their time. One example looks at research from Opinium, a survey which found that out of 2,400 employees, 32 percent of them are being monitored at their jobs as of October. The numbers in April were 24 percent, showing a significant increase.

Curiously, according to HR departments, employee monitoring is more prevalent than these respondents indicate. Respondents in HR and IT both indicated that monitoring is currently happening within their organizations at 69 percent and 63 percent respectively. It’s safe to say that most employees are being monitored in some way, even if they don’t know they are. If employees don’t know they are being monitored, this can create a disconnect that leads to distrust.

How you monitor your employees is none of our business, but it’s critical that you monitor your network somehow, if only for network security’s sake. If you want to take a more hands-off approach, as many businesses do, Reciprocal Technologies can help. We can monitor your systems for you so that you don’t look like the bad guys. Just reach out to us at 317-759-3972 to get the conversation started.