David Greenhalgh, employment partner at Joelson, agrees that the expanding range of technology available to keep tabs on employees means that more data about them is available than ever before – but that doesn’t necessarily turn every employer into Big Brother.
“Some people think of employee monitoring as something sinister that only the most nefarious employers engage in, but in fact many employers have very good reasons for wanting to keep track of their employees’ activities at work,” he says.
“There is a vast range of legitimate reasons to do so, from assessing and improving performance to measuring employee efficiency and improving quality control.”
In fact, Greenhalgh believes that advances in AI will help protect the rights of employees to privacy, as it will “enable employers to analyse data automatically and autonomously, without individuals having direct access to it”.
Ultimately, decisions around employee monitoring have to be made within an atmosphere of trust – they shouldn’t simply be based on the need to comply.
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Huib (Hub) Van Bockel