The Ethics Behind Employee Tracking Software


Through modernity, change has been exercised in all of society’s sectors, including the work field. During the twenty first century, the technological advances have been so great that employers are now even able to track their employees’ activities through software usage. Whether this violates the constitutional rights of businessmen and other working people, it is debatable.

What Employee Monitoring Can Accomplish

A positive effect that comes from monitoring employees is a mode of keeping employees in check and focused on their work. In other words, it observes people in order to make sure they are not distracted by social networks or other programs when they are supposed to be working to earn their salaries. The increased measuring and transparency could lead to better productivity overall.

It Stresses Employees Out

While corporations may think monitoring employees enhances their work and heightens their focus, the true effect may be the opposite. Many people who are affected by this act claim that the “hovering over their shoulders” harms their work standards because it stresses them out as anxiety replaces their confidence. Of course, stressed employees are not as productive and lowers employee engagement.

Is It Really Ethical?

More so, studies show that most corporations who exercise this kind of monitoring have fired more people than other businesses. Most of these unfortunate outcomes results from corporation being able to access employees’ emails in order to see whether their messages are relevant to their work or if they are being misused in any way. However, as beneficial as this would seem for the head of these businesses, is this truly ethical for the remainder of people working for a company? After all, a majority of people possess lower-rank positions and struggle to maintain themselves financially. Many people have even claimed that if the quality of their work is above average, then their usage of company emails should not be taken into consideration if no illegal activity takes place.

Managers Might Make Compliance Assumptions

Another disadvantage of monitoring an employee relates to the fact that if a boss is able to see everything a person is doing, being able to talk about a problem relating to them with upper management would be nearly impossible. If the boss has access to all of a person’s information and data, discretion when it comes to compliance is nonexistent. Managers may be at risk of jumping to conclusions.

Damaging Company Culture Overall

Furthermore, installing surveillance programs on work computers may even bring forth resentment and bitterness from employees having to deal with this unethical monitoring. After all, people who are resentful more often than not ultimately end up illustrating their emotions at one point. This can undermine the professional environment of the work place, generating a lack of amicability among employees and employers. If there is no respect between both parties, then surely their communication will affect company operations.

Ultimately, while employee tracking software might sound favorable overall, there are many portions of it that may jeopardize the work-place environment and the corporation’s work quality. Despite the lack of ethics this monitoring would imply, if the ending results prove to be detrimental, then perhaps the concept should be kept aside. This type of monitoring should essentially only be used when an employee gives a reason to be tracked.

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