Research shows employees who know they’re being monitored perform significantly better
An integrated security and surveillance system can do more than just protect your business from theft and vandalism – it can also significantly improve your workers’ productivity. Employees who know they are being monitored are automatically incentivized to worker harder and do better, especially in client-facing businesses and retail establishments like banks, restaurants, hotels, and other customer services.
In fact, one recent study showed that restaurants who had employee monitoring systems installed increased monthly revenues by nearly $3,000 – and considering that average weekly theft among the restaurants only amounted to around $100, much of that increase can likely be attributed to increased employee productivity.
Integrated security systems include both video surveillance and software-based monitoring solutions
While video surveillance is the cornerstone of most integrated security systems, it’s far from the only tool that employers can use to boost their security and increase worker productivity. In retail and restaurant businesses, an integrated security strategy might involve an inventory-tracking and anti-theft system, such as Restaurant Guard, the program used in the study mentioned in the beginning of this article. In addition, it could involve intelligent video monitoring software, which can detect potential threats and suspicious behavior, often allowing security personnel or company management to intervene before a serious incident occurs.
For office-based company locations, where each employee uses a computer on daily basis, tracking and monitoring software can also have a positive effect on employee productivity. In particular, employers may want to utilize keystroke logging software as well as software that blocks certain websites and keeps an eye on web traffic. In addition to preventing employees from spending too much company time on entertainment websites, this software can deter (or detect) employees who attempt to engage in prohibited behaviors, including attempting to steal or inadvertently forward along sensitive company information.
Employee monitoring doesn’t have to be negative; data can help guide data for bonuses, promotions, and other rewards
While many employees may see increased monitoring as a purely negative phenomenon, worker tracking and surveillance systems have real benefits. As the owner or manager of a business, one of the biggest challenges is often knowing which employees actually deserve a promotion or bonus. It can be difficult to gain hard data to drive these rewards, distinguishing the employees who simply have a good relationship with you from those who are actually the most valuable for your business.
Deciding whom to promote is just one of the many areas where increased employee monitoring data can be utilized to help make vital business decisions. In addition to helping detect fraud, bad habits, and absenteeism in your worst employees, employee data can also detect hard work, commitment, and innovation in your best team members. Your hardest and most effective workers can be rewarded for their efforts – and you’ll gain essential data about each of your employees’ strengths and weaknesses.
Always inform employees if they’re being monitored to respect employee privacy and avoid legal issues
Current laws place few restrictions on workplace employee monitoring programs, with a few caveats: employers should inform workers that they are being monitored and laws in many states forbid monitoring in clearly private areas, such as bathrooms and changing rooms. In addition, while employers can record video, in most states they can’t record audio as it’s considered wiretapping.
Not only is informing employees of surveillance programs a way for you to comply with the law and avoid any civil litigation issues – it’s also typically the right thing to do. People have a reasonable expectation of privacy, and respecting workers’ privacy rights means telling them how and when they’re being watched. If you don’t tell workers about monitoring programs, they may be upset or alarmed if they find out you’ve been watching them – and, in rare cases, may attempt to take legal action against you, especially if what you find leads to their termination. There are exceptions, of course. Hidden monitoring can specifically be used to catch theft or other illegal suspected activity. But a long-term monitoring program will work smoothly and avoid potential issues if there is full disclosure.
While employee monitoring can be a controversial subject, companies are well within their legal rights to closely watch employees while working on company time. As long as companies are transparent about when, how, and why they watch employees and do not abuse their power, employee monitoring can be a positive force within your organization. However, if you want to effectively monitor your workers, you’ll first need a comprehensive, integrated security system in order to do so – and the experts at POM Technologies can help.
To learn more about how a powerful integrated security system can help simultaneously increase your organization’s security, efficiency, and productivity, contact POM Technologies today at 212.688.2767 or through our convenient online form for a free consultation.
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