June 29th, 2015

How Employee Monitoring Can Save Your Business

Monitoring Time Wasting Employees

Photo Credit: Laura

The NHL hockey playoffs had just begun when our customers were already sharing colorful anecdotes with us about how our employee monitoring solution was helping them maintain a shutout on wasted time. There’s nothing wrong with being a hockey fan – heck, include us in that lot. But if you want to check the scores after work, that’s probably a better strategy than tweeting about your hero’s hat trick while you’re supposed to be productive at your desktop.

Keeping employees productive is no game. A recent article in Forbes about who wastes the most time at work breaks it down for us:

Imagine an employee who works 2,080 hours per year (260 days). If she is in top the bracket of time wasters, she wastes 520 hours per year. That’s 25% of her total hours at work spent on unproductive activities. Clearly this costs your company capital.

While employees congregate around TV screens, they’re not answering phones or supporting clients on emails. March Madness alone, for example, costs U.S. companies $175 million in wasted time in just the first two days.

Even if a relatively productive employee is spending just 10 percent of their time sharing the latest hockey scores on Facebook, shopping on eBay from their work computer, or doing other things that won’t look great on a performance review, that represents a big chunk of change. With a $70,000 salary, not uncommon for a sales rep, software coder, middle manager or similar position, that’s $7,000 that you’re paying for the person to not work.

The Hidden Costs of Unproductive Employees

How much could you save by not paying for new employees? That’s not the kind of metric that’s likely to end up on a business planning spreadsheet. Still, that kind of calculation is all too necessary among those who start realizing how much their employees are not working – thanks to employee monitoring.

One of our customers was just weeks away from doubling the size of an entire department because the departmental manager just couldn’t squeeze more productivity out of his existing team. At least, that was the situation before they started monitoring. When it turned out that employees on that team were spending 20 percent of their time or more wasting time with online activities that had nothing to do with their job, there was a shakeup within the department.

After some conversations with HR and a bit of retraining, it was discovered that the team had more than enough resources to do the job – and the company got to save a minimum of three new salaries, together worth well over $100,000. Naturally, those savings would be compounded each year – letting the company spend the savings on much-needed capital equipment investments.

What are unproductive employees costing your company? Start monitoring and find out.