Employee monitoring is a practice which is going on since many years. People are accepting it, questioning it and also making allegations that it is not legally right to monitor employees activities. We live in a democratic society where everyone feels free to share his or her opinion and nobody wants to feel pressurized and don’t want to get monitored and especially by his employer.
If you want to know that whether employee monitoring is legal or not then let me tell you that it is absolutely legal when done in a right way. When you hear the word monitoring, it does not always mean that tracking of employees in a harsh sense but it is all about monitoring employee productivity as tracking employee attendance by having workers sign in and out on a work computer or employee portal.
Different Ways Of Employee Monitoring And Usage
People from different businesses uses employee monitoring in different ways such as Email monitoring, telephone monitoring, audio and video monitoring, mobile devices, GPS tracking, social media monitoring and much more.
Monitoring can be done in different areas and ways with many simple ways but ethics must come first. These different ways of monitoring help managers to keep updates of employees every single activity and increase sales productivity.
Now that it’s clear that employee monitoring helps employers monitor sales activities about employees but the question also arises that whether it is legal or not?
To talk straight, an employer has a right to monitor employees on the job. Being an employer you have hired employees to which you give wages to them in return. So, it is your concern to know what your staff does in the office timings and especially the field staff who are out on the field for some work related.
Under different laws employee monitoring is a thumbs up but there is some limits:
Under Federal Law
Eavesdropping is a gray area but still, employer monitors their employee’s activities. And it is quite legal too. President of National Workrights Institute said that if an employer wants to put a microphone in an office area and listen to what everybody does all day, that’s perfectly legal, but you can’t put a bug into their personal space by putting cameras into bathrooms, cafeteria or locker rooms.
Under State Law
When talking about laws related to workplace monitoring, it may vary. Whether the monitoring takes places via audio, video or e-mail. Legal experts mostly believe that those organization who want to monitor employees generally ask employees written confirmation to it.
Experts suggest some right ways which you should check out if you are planning for employee monitoring:
- Seek legal advice before planning employee monitoring.
- If you are planning to not to target everyone make sure you are not discriminating other than legally protected class based on age, race, gender, religion or disability.
- Do not monitor your employees when they are on leave.
In the USA, nearly 77% of employers monitor their employee’s activities in the workplace. Being some disadvantages available as it may intrude into employees privacy which may lead to stress and result in low productivity.
Employee Monitoring is just based on limits you apply on monitoring your employees and a little note that you cannot go beyond a certain point.
If you maintain employees privacy and create a work environment conducive for employees to perform their best.
Definitely, employee monitoring is a boon both for employees and managers, if performed in right way and in limits without sacrificing their personal space.