mployee employee monitoring software became much more popular during the pandemic. Employers are trying to figure out ways to track their employees’ productivity while they work from home. Different solutions are proving to be more effective than others. In this post, we take a look at the two kinds of software so that you can make a more informed decision. Let’s start by defining each solution.
Employee Monitoring Software
As the name implies, employee monitoring software enables organizations to monitor and supervise employees’ work computers from administrator computers. It’s used not only to supervise performance, but also to prevent confidential information from leaking and catch illegal activities and insider threats. Employee monitoring software can monitor keystrokes, passwords, social media activity, websites visited, and chats.
Many monitoring solutions can also take screenshots of mobile activities as well, and track emails that are sent through company servers. Administrators can then analyze emails by natural language processing and keyword searches. Logs can be received via email or viewed through a cloud panel.
The Top 5 Employee Monitoring Software in 2021
- Veriato Cerebral - This software can monitor employee activity and stop potential insider threats by using AI to collect data.
- Teramind - This tracking software captures screen recordings, tracks emails and keystrokes, views employees’ PCs, and even monitors Zoom sessions.
- ActivTrak - This tool monitors employees’ actions to analyze them and improve upon productivity. They’ve also improved its platform for remote workers.
- Hubstaff - This software is more known for its time tracking capabilities, but it also monitors employee activity and tracks location.
- Controlio - This solution is cloud-based so it’s more affordable and can be scaled. It can track employee activity, productivity, and potential threats.
Pros of Employee Monitoring Software
- Keep an eye on employees - The most difficult part about employees working from home is not knowing what they’re doing at all times. With employee monitoring software, managers will know if subordinates are working on a task for shopping for products on Amazon.
- Know when employees are working - With employees working from home, it can be difficult to know which hours they’re on the clock. Monitoring allows you to see when they’re logged on and they’re on a break.
- Identifies good and bad behavior - You always know which websites your employees are on, how many hours they spend on social media, and so forth. This tells you who uses their time wisely and allows you to intervene when someone isn’t following work policy.
- Helps avoid conflict - Companies that hire freelancers can track their progress and hours to ensure contracts are abided to and hours are completed. Businesses can also avoid malware attacks by informing employees not to revisit at-risk sites and open dangerous emails.
Cons of Employee Monitoring Software
- Employees’ privacy - This is one of the top concerns among employees. They fear that their private conversations are being recorded and non-work hours are being monitored. Plus, some employers might be monitoring their employees without even knowing it.
- Destroying Trust - It’s only natural to feel like you aren’t trusted if someone feels the need to monitor you. Some may feel like they were never trusted and that their commitment is being questioned, which can cause a toxic work environment.
- Legal issues - Employers must remain within their legal rights to monitor someone remotely. If a company employs people in multiple geographic locations, the laws can get confusing.
- The blurry line between work and home - With people working from home, productivity looks very different depending on the individual. If someone looks at their social media accounts more than another person, does that make them less productive?
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Employee Productivity Software
Productivity software has traditionally been used for producing documents, worksheets, charts, presentations, graphs, and other information. Essentially, its purpose is to improve the efficiency of workers.
But a new class of productivity software has emerged in 2021, which leverages AI to automatically identify people's tasks, observe how and when they complete them, and analyze performance using data. This paradigm shift enables companies to focus on measuring employees based on their output and work quality, which ultimately is what impacts a company's bottom line - not what keystrokes and websites the employees visit.
Pros of Productivity Software
- Improvement in quality - Everything from communication to analytics to effectiveness auditing is made possible with productivity tools. Having an array of channels encourages collaboration and usually results in improved quality of work.
- Tracking and reporting - Knowing who is working on what and when they are doing it is crucial to making progress on a project. Tracking and reporting also helps identify problems or communicate progress to management or clients.
- Mobility and adaptability - With salespeople on the road, remote workers at home, and employees in the office, organizations need mobility and adaptability. Cloud-based software allows businesses to be more efficient and productive from anywhere.
- Effective time management - Good time management can ensure deadlines are made on time, projects get done, and products/services get delivered. Bad time management negatively affects client relationships and damages reputation.
Cons of Productivity Software
With so many productivity tools to choose from, it’s less about the cons or more about how to effectively use productivity software. If it’s used in the right way, you shouldn’t have to worry about the disadvantages because there shouldn’t be any significant ones.
The Main Difference
Productivity software helps people get their work done. Monitoring software helps ensure employees are working hard and not slacking off. The problem with the latter is that when employers track their employees, they’re breaking trust and bringing down morale. According to Gartner, 2/3 of employees pretend they’re working when they know tracking systems are monitoring their actions. David Liddle, CEO of The TCM Group, founding president of the Institute of Organizational Dynamics, and author of Managing Conflict has this to say, “Do the HR professionals signing these systems off really believe that ‘Big Brother’-type behavior is going to make people work harder and become more productive?”
MetaSpark, by contrast, revolutionizes the productivity software space. It uses data from employees’ completed tasks to measure productivity and performance, without the need for invasive monitoring software. It also saves managers time because they don’t have to constantly ‘check’ their employees to make sure they’re working. Plus, it’s an AI-Driven Productivity Hub that automatically brings everyone’s tasks into one dashboard and analyzes their work output.
Are you interested in productivity software that offers accurate, data-driven insights into productivity across individuals, departments, and the entire organization? Take the MetaSpark tour today!