Why You Need an Employee Productivity Tracker

More and more, companies are starting to realize that they need to look at monitoring employee productivity levels to reduce money spent on wasted time. Your employees might spend anywhere from 30 minutes to 3 working hours a day doing non-work-related activities, such as browsing social media, chatting with colleagues, or handling private matters. 

The estimated figure for money spent on wasted productivity will differ with each unique company situation, and whether or not your employees are content in their company culture. Experts suggest that nearly all of your employees (89%) are wasting some time at work, with about 30% of your workers wasting at least 30 minutes a day. 

While 30 minutes a day might seem minimal, that wasted time can easily add up to two and a half hours a week, which is, simply, costing your company.

With any business, your company must understand where your money goes. However, with a basic time tracking tool, it can be difficult to identify when time theft is occurring. That’s why you should invest in an employee productivity tracker.

Employee Productivity Tracker

What is an Employee Productivity Tracker

An employee productivity tracker is a software that is designed to monitor and track certain behaviors on a user’s computer. Typically, the productivity tracker will record the apps, programs, and websites that the employee visited when tracking time. This is so you, as the employer, can verify whether or not your employee was working when they said they were. 

Most of the time, a productivity tracker will keep track of the behaviors on a computer when an employee is on company time. This type of tracker can work as an automatic time tracking system, which creates a time entry as soon as your employee logs on to the computer. You can also allow it to track manual time so that employees must hit record when they log on and when they are working on certain projects. 

In most cases, employee productivity tracking software will largely depend on the employee to manually log work time. However, this is not always the case. Because employee productivity tracking software can be paired with insider threat detection and cybersecurity features, you can have it set up to continually track computer activities to protect your company against insider threats and other security issues

Employee productivity software is more than just employee time tracking software. It can also be used to monitor security threats and improve project management. 

If you would like to use your productivity software to also monitor security threats, then you will want to keep the software hidden from your employee. You can secretly install the software remotely and monitor all the activities through an admin console. In this scenario, the software will be running undetected either during set hours or during the entire time that the computer is on. 

While running monitoring software secretly behind your employees’ backs sounds like an invasion of privacy, note that most companies are required to protect sensitive client information, and employees are expecting that their company is monitoring their behavior for this reason. And since the employees are being paid to work for the company, then work time should be dedicated to company activities. 

Of course, no sensitive information on company workers should be obtained and used against their employees. Employers already have sensitive information about the employee so there is a level of trust that is required when employers and employees are working together. And at a basic capacity, employees expect their time to be monitored as the employer is buying their time, and as such, there is an expectation of productivity and work ethic already established in work culture. 

Features of an Employee Tracking Software

Employee productivity tracker software can range from time tracking software to monitoring your company’s internet. Therefore, the main features of an employee productivity tracker may vary widely.

When considering software solely for time tracking and productivity monitoring, these are the features you should look for:

  • Time management: The most important feature of productivity management is the ability to track an employee’s use of company time. A time tracker should be included to track working hours, as well as other time management features. These would include noticing and pausing time when a user goes silent and there is no user input on the computer, and adding manual time for when an employee happens to work outside of normal hours. 
  • User behavior monitoring: Behavioral analytics is a feature that can help upper-level management to understand typical behavioral patterns of your employees. This might mean tracking a baseline amount of time that an employee spends on a given project type. While behavioral analytics is particularly useful for detecting security threats, it can also clue you in to abnormal employee behaviors. They may be unhappy at work or in their personal life. An employee tracking software might also provide optional features, such as taking periodic screenshots of your employees’ computers and logging the keystrokes
  • Project and task management: Sometimes it can be difficult to gauge how long a project or task might take. If it is unclear how long the task or project will take, then you can use your employee productivity tracking software to analyze how long it usually takes and estimate timelines for tasks/projects. 
  • Analytics and reporting: When using employee monitoring software, you need to be able to easily see productivity and employee analyses and time reports. Because of the number of employees that your company can have at a given time, it is impossible to spend your time monitoring every single employee and going through screenshots. Analytics and reporting features bring performance metrics to you; see quick estimates for wasted time, time spent on apps, times spent on websites, usual behaviors, periods for how long an employee spends on social media, and more. 
  • Monitoring the remote worker: Given the rise of remote work, and the COVID-19 pandemic, many companies are forced to close doors and ask that employees conduct remote work if possible. While the ability to work remotely has significantly opened doors for what the worker can do, it has also decreased employee performance and labor productivity. A remote workforce also poses a threat to your company’s sensitive data and privileged network, so it is important to invest in an employee monitoring system for added security.
  • Monitor all billable hours: If your employees are required to use a work phone, then having a time card app can help you to track when your employees are doing work on the work phone or when they are slacking off. This is also an ease-of-use factor for your employees as they can easily log in on their phone even if they are experiencing an issue with their work computer. 

A tracking tool can monitor your employees’ productivity level and it can also provide added security to a remote workforce. 

Here are some features to consider if you’re looking for a monitoring app that will do more than just monitor employee productivity:

  • Keystroke logging: Keystroke logging is the ability to capture and log the keystrokes of a given user during a given time. Some tracking programs will be able to record and save a lot of keystroke data, but this will depend on how much data your software aims to collect and whether or not your company can store that data securely. Regardless, monitoring keystrokes will tell you if your workers are being productive, and it will also alert your team to a potential insider threat. 
  • Internet monitoring: A common form of internet monitoring is bandwidth controls, which are controls that are placed on an IP address or browser to limit the amount of data downloaded or uploaded through that IP. In general, though, an internet monitoring software will record the websites that the user visits to identify whether or not that employee was productive or not.  
  • Remote employee monitoring tool: The use of remote teams are on the rise. These numbers have only increased due to COVID-19 restrictions. Because of this, companies are seeing that their sensitive data is more susceptible due to weaker networks used by remote employees. Unfortunately, there is not enough time to provide the necessary hardware for your remote team to stay safe. Instead, a monitoring software in addition to a company-approved firewall can provide added protection against weak security in personal network connections.

Benefits of an Employee Tracker Software

Employee tracking software is completely legal in most jurisdictions and required in some industries as employees handle the company’s sensitive information as well as the sensitive information of customers. If you are in an industry that collects sensitive information about clients (which might happen with regular financial transactions), then you need employee tracking software.

In industries where privacy is not mandated, here are some other benefits of employee monitoring:

  • Stay on top of a remote team: If you are new to managing a remote team, then you know that this can be a difficult task. If remote workers are in different time zones, or there are things at home that are distracting, then it might seem that your employees are only working a few hours a day. An employee productivity tracker will be able to track when employees are working, and this tracker will also provide reports so that you can see when your employees are most likely to be productive. They will also tell you clearly how long tasks take now that your team is remote.
  • Keep your employee engagement high overall, especially during tough times: When times are tough, employees are less motivated to do work. There may also be additional stressors and needs pulling them away from work. Employee monitoring software can help keep them accountable. They can also see exactly how much they are pulled from work so that they can stay focused.
  • Monitor employee activity during work hours: Your employees might say they are working hard, but this does not mean that they are actively working for all 8 hours of the workday. Employee productivity tracking software can see what apps and webpages employees have visited during the tracked time. 
  • Track time: With a productivity tracker, not only will your company be able to track time, from log in to log out, but you can see the hours of the day that your employees are most active, and when they take off for breaks. 
  • Additional tracker app for a mobile device: If your employees use their mobile device for work, or their mobile device is connected to the company internet, it is important that the productivity tracker also has a mobile app. A mobile app will allow your employee to use mobile time tracking. The company can also monitor when an employee is on their phone during work hours, as well as monitor if sensitive information is being passed through the connection on the mobile device. There is also the ability to enable or disable GPS tracking on the work phone; so you can decide if you need to monitor employee location while they are on the clock. Look for a productivity app with an integrated Chrome extension or web browser extension as well.
  • Garner a productivity metric: As an employer, it can be difficult to go to your employees and say that they are not working hard. After all, what proof do you have? With a productivity tracker, you have clear productivity and performance metrics that say how hard your employee is working, their productivity effectiveness, and so on. A clear metric will give you good grounds for developing a productivity plan and executing that plan with your employee. 
  • More detailed timesheet: You need a timesheet for all your employees so that you know when they are working and when they clock off for the evening. A productivity tracker provides a more detailed timesheet than knowing that they clocked in at 9 am and out at 5 pm. Sometimes your employees are work longer hours and are working well past 5 pm. With a productivity tracker, they can add those odd hours manually so you know how hard your employees are truly working. If the software also comes with an app, then you will be able to access the employee time card on the timesheet app. 
  • Simplified electronic payroll: By moving away from paper timesheets, your finance department can quickly and easily export timesheets so that payroll is a breeze. Your Human Resource department can also use the employee timesheet for marking employee attendance, expense tracking, and improved employee scheduling, among other workforce management tasks. It can also be integrated with invoicing software for contract or freelance employees. 
  • Extra safeguards against external threats: Sometimes an external threat to your company’s data might be something as simple as a disgruntled employee. If you notice that your employee, who normally works hard throughout the day, starts to slack off and skip hours, then this could be a sign of something larger at play, and perhaps that your employee is frustrated. With behavioral analytics, productivity trackers can alert your team to when an employee has moved away from their normal behaviors, which could be a sign of an attack. 

Micromanaging your team can take a toll on productivity and your corporate environment. Instead, businesses are turning to employee monitoring through secure software. The right software will allow you to track your employees and, in doing so, collect data on how to improve productivity as well as putting up a safeguard against external threats.

Why You Need an Employee Monitoring Software 

Employee monitoring software is a powerful tool that can boost worker productivity. It is much more than simple employee time tracking. It can also provide an added layer of security to protect your sensitive data and employee information. Employee monitoring software is minimally invasive and in some industries, it is required. 

Boost employee productivity today with an employee productivity tracker from SoftActivity. SoftActivity’s employee productivity tool can be used for both terminal servers and workstations, so you can monitor thousands of employees effectively and at an affordable price. See how SoftActivity can support your business today!

By SoftActivity Team

August 10th, 2020