FAQ – Employee Monitoring

FAQ – Employee Monitoring

Q: What is employee monitoring?

Employee monitoring is broadly defined as a way for employers to observe and track employee activity while in the workplace, when accessing the corporate network, or when representing their company outside of the office.

Q: What problems does employee monitoring solve?

Employee monitoring can help improve productivity, prevent intellectual property theft, reduce the behaviors that create business risk, enhance compliance reporting and auditing, streamline new hire onboarding, eliminate staff management challenges, and make manual HR and payroll processes more efficient by tracking employee attendance.

Q: What are the challenges of rolling out an employee monitoring initiative?

You’ll be dealing with the cost and time involved in installing and learning new systems, leadership that may be resistant to dramatic change, HR professionals trying to adapt their guidelines to the new expectations, and employees concerned about their privacy in the workplace.

Q: Is it legal to monitor my employees’ workplace activities?

Federal and state privacy laws in the US generally allow employers a great deal of leeway to define the extent of their employee monitoring programs. Some state and local laws require employee consent, yet others do not require companies to inform employees they are being monitored. Make sure to familiarize yourself with privacy laws that apply in your location.

Q: Do I have to tell my employees that I’m monitoring their activities?

Some states, including Connecticut and Delaware, prohibit employers from monitoring staff without prior notice. The federal Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA) supports two cases for employee monitoring: When there is a “legitimate business purpose” for monitoring, and when prior employee consent has been obtained. In implementing an employee monitoring program for your company, it’s always best to research how the privacy laws in your area apply and get employee consent whenever required.