Monitoring remote workers

If you are self employed and working from home being monitored remotely is not likely to be an issue but with the rise in the numbers of remote workers during the pandemic has come an increased demand for software to monitor their activity and productivity.

Software is now available that can track workers’ hours, keystrokes, mouse movements and websites visited.

It has been argued that this can maintain or even improve productivity, but monitoring can also be counter-productive.

Research by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) suggests that surveillance can also damage trust.

It argues that employers should have clear policies so that workers know how they may be monitored, and crucially, it must be proportionate.

Employers will get “much better results” by supporting employees rather than focusing on potentially irrelevant measures of input, such as the number of keystrokes.

There are also issues regarding privacy when people are working remotely from home.

Ideally, employers should have a clearly-stated, written policy that explains clearly how and why monitoring software is being used and perhaps most crucially when.