Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Your Boss Won't Stop Spying on You (Because It Works)

No one likes the idea of a workplace in which managers keep a constant eye on employees. Workers find it creepy, and it’s not as if ambitious managers clawed their way up the ladder just to snoop on their underlings all day. Still, much of the surveillance now takes place electronically—in theory, freeing bosses to focus on other matters while monitoring software keeps everyone in line. So office spying isn’t going away.

A study published over the weekend by researchers suggests that electronic surveillance in the workplace is strikingly effective (PDF). An examination of data provided by NCR (NCR), which makes software that examines all activity on restaurants’ point-of-sale systems while looking for suspect patterns, found lower levels of theft under workplace surveillance. NCR even says that employees seem to become more productive in other ways. (more)