There’s a wrong and right way to use everything. Yes, you can use your waterproof boot as a flower vase, but I’m sure that’s not what it’s for.
The same goes for employee surveillance and monitoring. The debate about its usage seems to be highly active these days. Questions seem to be never-ending: Will it boost productivity or kill it, does it destroy workspace privacy and trust, is it even legal…
All of these concerns are reasonable, but are they justified? It all depends on your approach. Here’s the right way employee monitoring should be implemented.
Prepare the Ground
“Okay team, let’s try to finish this project today so we can all enjoy our weekend. Oh, and your computer activity is monitored from now on. Good luck everyone!” – I’m sure you’re aware this isn’t exactly how you should introduce your employees to employee monitoring software implementation. Well, unless you want yourself to be the main topic of disgruntled employees’ office chit-chat. In any other, normal, scenario, you’ll want to prepare them ahead.
Start with an all-staff meeting in which you’ll explain why you want to implement software to monitor PC activity within your office. This means being clear on the benefits it will bring for your company as well as for your employees individually. It’s also important to address what will be monitored, and what won’t. This meeting is the right place for your employees to express their concerns and for you to reassure them.
The next step is writing a policy, which will contain all information regarding employee desktop monitoring implementation. It should end with a consent form, which is obligatory by law in many countries.
This means everyone should be monitored. Yes, you included. You want your employees on board with it, right? Well, how can you better set the tone, than by making everyone equal in monitoring?
Your employees are often worried about how any computer usage, non-work-related, will be perceived. It goes as far as refraining from using the computer for any personal use even during lunch break, a time they should use to relax and recharge. But, seeing their manager doing all that, shows it’s human to take a break and relax before returning to daily assignments.
The purpose of using PC system monitoring software is evaluation. You’re gathering important data of the company’s overall performance to further optimize it. Employee monitoring software, such as Workpuls, allows you to see what employees are doing on their computers in real-time. Seeing your designer, for example, spending the whole day in Photoshop and still not finishing that icon they’re working on, might be a good indicator that they’re struggling with something. Furthermore, in Workpuls you can sort all apps and websites employees are using as productive, unproductive or neutral, so you’re also always in time to catch someone watching way too many cat videos on a single day while neglecting their assignments.
Use recorded data to create reports at certain time intervals. Remember that the shorter interval is, the better use can be made of it. Ideally, you should make a weekly performance report, at least at first. Point out what worked well for your team, and what needs improvement. Appraise your high achievers, while giving constructive advice to those who struggled.
A single, annual report isn’t as helpful as regular ones are, as it’s often too late to make an impact. However, combining all reports into one, yearly, analysis is good to measure how well you’re working towards high-end company goals.
But it’s not only you who should do all the talking. If there are two sides to the monitoring process, the observer and the observed, both should have their say in that. This means your employees should give their insight on the monitoring desktop software exertion or process in general. Encourage them to come up front with their concerns or suggestions during all phases of implementation. If you want to know if employee system monitoring is fruitful, you have to know both sides.
Also, give them access to their performance data software gathered. After all, you want them to use it to improve further, no? Workpuls also offers a unique employee login, which allows every worker to have access to their productivity data and payroll timesheets, which they can use to organize their workday better.
Employee monitoring can have a direct impact on your company’s productivity, but that can't be done in a topsy-turvy manner. There are a few steps you must follow in order to be able to use employee monitoring in its full potential.