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Employee Privacy 2022: 78% of employers are using employee monitoring tools to track work performance and activity

by wrich

Did you know that 1 in 5 companies are now using an employee monitoring tool? Well, a new study by Instant Offices has revealed all the different employee monitoring trends that are happening in the new hybrid workplace.


  • 78% of companies report using employee monitoring software to track worker performance and online activity.
  • 73% say stored recordings of calls, emails, and messages have affected team members’ performance reviews.
  • Over 50% say they are implementing non-traditional monitoring techniques.
  • 94% of employers track emails 

The new hybrid working model presents a unique set of challenges for managers, reflected in the increased demand for employee surveillance software. Demand for surveillance tools skyrocketed in 2020, increasing by almost 60%. As well as this according to Google Trends, worldwide searches for ’employee monitoring software’ increased by 35% in 2020 compared to the year before, coinciding with the lockdown and the surge in people working from home.

Emails are the most tracked software by employers 

So which are the most common things that employers are tracking?

  • Email: 94%
  • Calls: 87%
  • Video: 87%
  • Messages: 85%

The business areas using surveillance tools include financial, legal, retail, technology, healthcare, manufacturing, energy and government sectors.

The study comparing the data collection features of 32 popular team member monitoring tools discovered:

  • 94% track how much time employees spend on tasks
  • 75% can take screengrabs of workers’ desktop
  • 59% collate and report on keyboard and mouse movements

Common surveillance methods

Popular workplace surveillance practices include:

  • Keylogger software on company equipment (alerts supervisors when workers use devices for personal activities)
  • Webcams to track biometric data
  • Video surveillance in common areas
  • Screen monitoring and screenshots to gauge productivity and stress levels
  • Employer-provided smartphones equipped with geolocation software to track employees’ whereabouts

Future of workplace surveillance: communication is key

The only way to successfully implement these tools is through complete transparency. More than half of workers feel anxious about their companies surveilling communications. Still, when the employer explains the reasons for the monitoring, over 50% of employees say they are more at ease with it.

Explaining your reasoning to your team can go a long way in assuring them that their best interests are at heart and that their workplace is safer and healthier with these monitoring guardrails in place.

Mark Turner, Chief Technology Officer at the Instant Group, says, “The rise in remote working and an influx of new technology means monitoring has ramped up. When used strategically, this tracking benefits all– businesses can identify resourcing issues, streamline processes and identify gaps, while employees can use the data to prioritize, manage workloads and track productivity. The key to using monitoring tools successfully is transparency and communication. If you can show your teams that using a piece of tracking technology not only benefits the business, but them too, then you’re on the right track.”

You can find the rest of the study here


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