How Critical Is Employee Monitoring Software in Business?

By Marianne Chrisos - Published on June 7, 2019
Employee Monitoring Software

You pay your employees for the work they do for your company. You also pay for the internet access, software, and other tools that they use. Isn’t it important to make sure that your resources aren’t being abused? You may want to assume the best about your employees, but sometimes you need data. According to one employee survey:

  • 64% of employees say they visit websites unrelated to their job every day at work. This breaks down to a self-reported 39% spending one hour or less, 29% spending 2 hours, 21% spending 5 hours, and 3% spending10 hours or more.
  • 85% of employees use their company email for personal reasons and 10% of all employee emails are personal or unrelated to their work.
  • 92% of stock trading happens during the workday, as the traditional workday hours correspond to the open hours of the stock trading floor.

Employee monitoring software allows businesses to track the behavior of their employees during the workday to better understand how employees are spending their time. Technology has increasingly become an important part of making the lives of HR teams and employees easier, more efficient, and more transparent to better support the goals of the business, and employee monitoring tools are no exception to that trend.

What is employee monitoring software?

Employee monitoring tools enable businesses to see almost everything related to how employees are spending their time and using company resources while on the job. This includes internet behavior, app access, email, social media usage, and phone use among many other things. It helps to answer questions like, Is this employee meeting expectations?

Does your business need employee monitoring software? Why it pays to have employee monitoring tools

There are essentially three types of employee monitoring software.

  • Productivity: These tools have advanced analytical and reporting capabilities to help your business easily identify which employees are making the most of their workday, as well as understand who might be behind on assignments. This gives businesses the data they need to both train and reward employees appropriately.
  • Surveillance: This is helpful in understanding employee behavior that can lead to reduced productivity, data loss, and more. It can be configured to control file access rights and permissions, track documents, monitor emails and internet usage, block access to removable storage, monitor printing, and see the idle and inactive time of workers.
  • Project management: This tool helps businesses both distribute and track tasks and projects. It allows managers to understand progress towards timelines and due dates and allows easy follow-up from both employees and management teams.

With these tools, your business can accomplish the following.

  • Increased productivity: Productivity is a major part of every business. When employees aren’t working to their full potential, meeting deadlines, or managing their time well, the company can suffer – from poor client relationships to lost revenue. Monitoring employee behavior helps companies understand if they’re abusing their time and spending more of their work hours browsing the internet and sharing on social media. You can even block access to certain sites if you’re concerned that they’re reducing productivity and becoming a distraction.
  • Quality assurance: The message you hear when you call a customer service line that says, “This call may be monitored and recorded for quality assurance” is a type of employee monitoring. It’s important to be able to listen to customer interactions that are happening with care teams, as they are often the front lines and face of your business. Employees who know their interactions are being monitored tend to perform higher and lose their tempers less. These recordings can also help train future employees down the line.
  • Fewer errors: Some employee monitoring solutions include real-time insight into what employees are working on at any given moment. If a team leader or project manager notices that an employee is involved in a lower-priority task, they can quickly and easily get the employee back on track towards whatever is a higher priority.
  • Increased security: Some employee tracking software tracks company phones or vehicles. This is to help monitor not just accurate mileage, but also to monitor employee safety. If a driver is supposed to be at a checkpoint at a certain time or check in the office and doesn’t, employee tracked GPS can help employees act fast in case there’s been an accident.
  • More accurate payroll and reduced loss: Attendance tracking software is a form of employee monitoring and helps employees track their time so that HR is paying them accurately and ensuring that they’re correctly accruing and using PTO. Some employee software takes pictures of an employees screen every few minutes or so to ensure that employees are staying on task – this is helpful for agencies who bill their clients by the hour and have to be able to log and record the work they do in that time.

Employee monitoring software can benefit businesses who need to keep a closer eye on their resources, as well as industry-specific companies, like long-distance trucking companies to keep tabs on their safety and schedule or call centers to keep customer interactions positive and error-free. Your employees are one of your biggest resources – make sure they’re investing in their work the way you’re investing in them.


Marianne Chrisos

Marianne Chrisos | Born in Salem, Massachusetts, growing up outside of Chicago, Illinois, and currently living near Dallas, Texas, Marianne is a content writer at a company near Dallas and contributing writer around the internet. She earned her master's degree in Writing and Publishing from DePaul University in Chicago and has worked in publishing, advertising, digital marketing, and content strategy.

Marianne Chrisos

Marianne Chrisos | Born in Salem, Massachusetts, growing up outside of Chicago, Illinois, and currently living near Dallas, Texas, Marianne is a content writer at a c...

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