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Privacy Issues with Employee Monitoring Systems


Employee monitoring systems give businesses the ability to track workers’ movements and activities in real-time and helps keep your staff operating at optimal capacity by identifying problems and creating more streamlined and efficient ways of working.

Although this technology offers an extremely effective way to measure performance and productivity, and there are numerous advantages to implementing employee monitoring systems, there are some privacy concerns and ethical considerations that must be addressed prior to implementation.

It’s important for companies to respect their workforce and be honest and open when implementing employee monitoring systems because unethical practices can cause problems between businesses and their employees. The best strategy is to be transparent and define your goals from the start while respecting your workers’ privacy and making them fully aware of their rights.

Simply installing GPS tracking devices in your company vehicles without telling the affected drivers is highly unethical and likely to inspire resentment and could even draw you a fine. The same problems can also occur by equipping staff with badges or smartphones capable of secretly gathering data on their activities.

Never try to sneak wearable tech or GPS employee tracking devices into your workers’ daily activities without their consent; the potential damage could be significant as there are numerous laws protecting employee privacy.

Make sure employees are aware of the following:

• What specific data will be collected and what that data will be used for
• How the information learned from the data will be processed
• When the monitoring system will be actively monitoring
• Where they can find relevant details about the monitoring system and the data it collects

If you are currently using Employee monitoring systems, or are thinking about implementing them and have questions you should check with a Professional Employer Organization (PEO). A PEO can help you create a legal and effective system that will be beneficial to both the Employer and Employee.

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