Looking for employee desktop monitoring tools.

Discussion in 'Windows XP Performance' started by voipfc, Apr 27, 2007.

  1. voipfc

    voipfc Guest

    What are the best utilities that monitor staff desktop activity?

    The main type of output required is how much time they spend
    interacting with programs windows and the names of the programs. An
    utility that can track which windows are active and how much mouse and
    keyboard activity occurs on those windows.

    In the case of websites there will be a need to check which web sites
    are the most used.

    /voipfc
     
    voipfc, Apr 27, 2007
    #1
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  2. voipfc

    Malke Guest

    voipfc wrote:
    > What are the best utilities that monitor staff desktop activity?
    >
    > The main type of output required is how much time they spend
    > interacting with programs windows and the names of the programs. An
    > utility that can track which windows are active and how much mouse and
    > keyboard activity occurs on those windows.
    >
    > In the case of websites there will be a need to check which web sites
    > are the most used.
    >
    > /voipfc
    >


    http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=employee+monitoring+tools&btnG=Google+Search


    Malke
    --
    Elephant Boy Computers
    www.elephantboycomputers.com
    "Don't Panic!"
    MS-MVP Windows - Shell/User
     
    Malke, Apr 27, 2007
    #2
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  3. voipfc wrote:

    > What are the best utilities that monitor staff desktop activity?


    Google is your friend, but I'm curious: why do you think you *need* to
    do this?

    > In the case of websites there will be a need to check which web sites
    > are the most used.


    That is best handled by a proxy server on your end that tracks and logs
    outgoing connections though your link to the internet. It's not a job
    for a desktop monitor program.

    > /voipfc

    ______
    Dennis
     
    Dennis McCunney, Apr 27, 2007
    #3
  4. voipfc

    voipfc Guest

    On Apr 27, 6:09 pm, Dennis McCunney <>
    wrote:
    > voipfcwrote:
    > > What are the best utilities that monitor staff desktop activity?

    >
    > Google is your friend, but I'm curious: why do you think you *need* to
    > do this?
    >


    The purpose is to ensure that the main office programs such as the
    Office programs, quickbooks etc those relevant to the work is what the
    spend most of their time in. If staff don't appear to finishing their
    work on time, it is important to now what they are really doing.


    > > In the case of websites there will be a need to check which web sites
    > > are the most used.

    >
    > That is best handled by a proxy server on your end that tracks and logs
    > outgoing connections though your link to the internet. It's not a job
    > for a desktop monitor program.
    >
    > > /voipfc

    >
    > ______
    > Dennis
     
    voipfc, Apr 27, 2007
    #4
  5. voipfc wrote:
    > On Apr 27, 6:09 pm, Dennis McCunney <>
    > wrote:
    >> voipfcwrote:
    >>> What are the best utilities that monitor staff desktop activity?

    >> Google is your friend, but I'm curious: why do you think you *need* to
    >> do this?

    >
    > The purpose is to ensure that the main office programs such as the
    > Office programs, quickbooks etc those relevant to the work is what the
    > spend most of their time in. If staff don't appear to finishing their
    > work on time, it is important to now what they are really doing.


    The simple solution for that is a standard image rolled out to all
    company PCs that only includes authorized software, and setting the user
    accounts as "Power Users", who can run installed software but not
    install their own. "So and so is a lazy sod who is goofing of on
    company time" is not the first assumption I make in such cases.

    Granted, if they don't finish their work on time, you need to know why.
    But assuming going in they are goofing off and doing other things
    instead of working is a questionable idea. There may be other reasons
    entirely, like too much work to get it all done, or procedures that get
    in the way.

    Going with a monitoring solution like this certainly does one thing: it
    communicates to the employees "We don't trust you to do your work unless
    someone is standing over your shoulder, so Big Brother is watching you!"

    Speaking personally, I wouldn't want to work for an employer who held
    that attitude. Would you?

    And depending upon where the business is located, you may be legally
    required to tell the employees such measures are in place and their
    activities may be monitored.

    At my employer, there was a standard image with approved software rolled
    out to all PCs, and employees who needed something non-standard needed
    approval from their manager and a request to IT to install it. There
    was also a company policy handbook that specified acceptable use of the
    resources that everyone had to read and sign a paper acknowledging they
    understood. Employees who performed poorly got bad performance reviews,
    and if improvement didn't happen, they got terminated. No employee
    monitoring software was ever deployed because it was not seen as needed.

    Efforts spent making sure employees aren't goofing off on company time
    are better applied to making sure the employees *can* do their work
    without unnecessary impediments, and making sure the company is a place
    people like working for and *want* to do their work.
    ______
    Dennis
     
    Dennis McCunney, Apr 27, 2007
    #5
  6. voipfc

    Ron Martell Guest

    Dennis McCunney <> wrote:

    <snip>

    >Efforts spent making sure employees aren't goofing off on company time
    >are better applied to making sure the employees *can* do their work
    >without unnecessary impediments, and making sure the company is a place
    >people like working for and *want* to do their work.
    >______
    >Dennis
    >


    <applause>

    Ron Martell Duncan B.C. Canada
    --
    Microsoft MVP (1997 - 2008)
    On-Line Help Computer Service
    http://onlinehelp.bc.ca
    Syberfix Remote Computer Repair

    "Anyone who thinks that they are too small to make a difference
    has never been in bed with a mosquito."
     
    Ron Martell, Apr 27, 2007
    #6
  7. voipfc

    Ed Metcalfe Guest

    "Ron Martell" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > <snip>
    > <applause>
    > <snip>


    I'll second that! A *very* well put case, and one I wholeheartedly agree
    with.

    Ed Metcalfe.
     
    Ed Metcalfe, Apr 28, 2007
    #7
  8. Ed Metcalfe wrote:
    > "Ron Martell" <> wrote in message
    > news:...
    >> <snip>
    >> <applause>
    >> <snip>

    >
    > I'll second that! A *very* well put case, and one I wholeheartedly agree
    > with.


    Thanks to both of you. This is kind of a pet peeve of mine.

    Robert Tonwnsend, in "Up the Organization", went on about "Theory X" vs
    "Theory Y" organizations. "Theory X" organizations implicitly assumed
    that people didn't want to work, would slack off at every opportunity,
    and needed to be stood over. "Theory Y" organizations assumed that
    working was as natural as eating, sleeping, and breathing, and that most
    organizations with problems had made it unnecessarily difficult to get
    the work done, and needed to rethink their policies and procedures.

    Townsend did his best to create Theory Y organizations. He was the CEO
    at Avis Rent a Car during their famous "We Try Harder" days, when Avis
    came from having Problems to being a solid number 2 in the industry and
    having regular revenue and profitability increases. "Up the
    Organization" was in part the story of what he did at Avis, and why, and
    it's one of the two best books on management I've read. (The other is
    Peter F. Drucker's "Management: Tasks, Practices, and Responsibilities")

    When I see questions like voipfc's, I think "Theory X", and my first
    question is "Why do you assume your employees are trying to goof off on
    you, and *need* such a setup in place?" The usual reasons for such
    assumptions have little to do with actual employee performance, and
    everything to do with insecurity on the part of the manager.

    > Ed Metcalfe.

    ______
    Dennis
     
    Dennis McCunney, Apr 28, 2007
    #8
  9. voipfc

    Guest

    I have a very powerful tool from SpectorSoft.com Their product records
    sites visited, programs used, emails sent, etc. It has the ability to
    alert you when keywords appear. For example, if your employees are
    using myspace or porns sites, you can find out. I do not work for or
    with the company. I use their product to track my home network. I
    have six kids and I need to be able to know what they are doing with
    their PCs. I realize my use in not the same as an office, but I know
    this would work well in that environment. You can have the tool
    snapshot the screen from time to time, you can capture text messages,
    emails, etc. I know a bunch of people will complain about whether
    this is right or the best way to handle this. I am not going to weigh
    in on that topic. In my office, I can manage people with more
    positive methods, however, I can see that it is likely that some
    people work in areas where that is not so easy. I simply have used
    several products like this to try to monitor my kids PCs and this is
    the best one of them all. It is also relatively cheap. As you would
    expect, the software hides itself from the user and can be managed
    remotely.

    On Apr 27, 5:51 am, voipfc <> wrote:
    > What are the best utilities that monitor staff desktop activity?
    >
    > The main type of output required is how much time they spend
    > interacting with programs windows and the names of the programs. An
    > utility that can track which windows are active and how much mouse and
    > keyboard activity occurs on those windows.
    >
    > In the case of websites there will be a need to check which web sites
    > are the most used.
    >
    > /voipfc
     
    , Apr 28, 2007
    #9
  10. voipfc

    voipfc Guest

    On 28 Apr, 14:11, "" <> wrote:
    > I have a very powerful tool from SpectorSoft.com Their product records
    > sites visited, programs used, emails sent, etc. It has the ability to
    > alert you when keywords appear. For example, if your employees are
    > using myspace or porns sites, you can find out. I do not work for or
    > with the company. I use their product to track my home network. I
    > have six kids and I need to be able to know what they are doing with
    > their PCs. I realize my use in not the same as an office, but I know
    > this would work well in that environment. You can have the tool
    > snapshot the screen from time to time, you can capture text messages,
    > emails, etc. I know a bunch of people will complain about whether
    > this is right or the best way to handle this. I am not going to weigh
    > in on that topic. In my office, I can manage people with more
    > positive methods, however, I can see that it is likely that some
    > people work in areas where that is not so easy. I simply have used
    > several products like this to try to monitor my kids PCs and this is
    > the best one of them all. It is also relatively cheap. As you would
    > expect, the software hides itself from the user and can be managed
    > remotely.
    >
    > On Apr 27, 5:51 am,voipfc<> wrote:
    >
    > > What are the best utilities that monitor staff desktop activity?

    >
    > > The main type of output required is how much time they spend
    > > interacting with programs windows and the names of the programs. An
    > > utility that can track which windows are active and how much mouse and
    > > keyboard activity occurs on those windows.

    >
    > > In the case of websites there will be a need to check which web sites
    > > are the most used.

    >
    > > /voipfc
     
    voipfc, Apr 28, 2007
    #10
  11. voipfc

    voipfc Guest

    On 27 Apr, 19:56, Dennis McCunney <>
    wrote:
    > voipfcwrote:
    > > On Apr 27, 6:09 pm, Dennis McCunney <>
    > > wrote:
    > >> voipfcwrote:
    > >>> What are the best utilities that monitor staff desktop activity?
    > >> Google is your friend, but I'm curious: why do you think you *need* to
    > >> do this?

    >
    > > The purpose is to ensure that the main office programs such as the
    > > Office programs, quickbooks etc those relevant to the work is what the
    > > spend most of their time in. If staff don't appear to finishing their
    > > work on time, it is important to now what they are really doing.

    >
    > The simple solution for that is a standard image rolled out to all
    > company PCs that only includes authorized software, and setting the user
    > accounts as "Power Users", who can run installed software but not
    > install their own. "So and so is a lazy sod who is goofing of on
    > company time" is not the first assumption I make in such cases.
    >
    > Granted, if they don't finish their work on time, you need to know why.
    > But assuming going in they are goofing off and doing other things
    > instead of working is a questionable idea. There may be other reasons
    > entirely, like too much work to get it all done, or procedures that get
    > in the way.
    >
    > Going with a monitoring solution like this certainly does one thing: it
    > communicates to the employees "We don't trust you to do your work unless
    > someone is standing over your shoulder, so Big Brother is watching you!"
    >
    > Speaking personally, I wouldn't want to work for an employer who held
    > that attitude. Would you?
    >
    > And depending upon where the business is located, you may be legally
    > required to tell the employees such measures are in place and their
    > activities may be monitored.
    >
    > At my employer, there was a standard image with approved software rolled
    > out to all PCs, and employees who needed something non-standard needed
    > approval from their manager and a request to IT to install it. There
    > was also a company policy handbook that specified acceptable use of the
    > resources that everyone had to read and sign a paper acknowledging they
    > understood. Employees who performed poorly got bad performance reviews,
    > and if improvement didn't happen, they got terminated. No employee
    > monitoring software was ever deployed because it was not seen as needed.
    >
    > Efforts spent making sure employees aren't goofing off on company time
    > are better applied to making sure the employees *can* do their work
    > without unnecessary impediments, and making sure the company is a place
    > people like working for and *want* to do their work.
    > ______
    > Dennis


    The impression I get is that a lot of computer users have a rather
    idealistic view of a modern technological probably inspired by Star
    Trek, some kind of Vorsprung durch Technik outlook. If you are nice to
    everybody no they will do you no harm. Well some employees join a
    company with the opportunity to engage in some fraud in mind.

    Most business people are not of that kind, probably due to experiences
    of being betrayed by others, employees included.
    When the internet wasn't present there was less chance of distractions
    on the desktop. The desire is not to stop employees going online, but
    to monitor that they are not spending office time and resources in a
    way that is of not benefit to the company.

    I'm sure is it now well known what happens at the office when there
    are major sporting events.

    I know of cases where the installation of CCTV for instance has paid
    for itself within days.

    Is it wrong for employers to seek to guard against such things?
     
    voipfc, Apr 28, 2007
    #11
  12. voipfc wrote:
    > On 27 Apr, 19:56, Dennis McCunney <>
    > wrote:
    >> Efforts spent making sure employees aren't goofing off on company time
    >> are better applied to making sure the employees *can* do their work
    >> without unnecessary impediments, and making sure the company is a place
    >> people like working for and *want* to do their work.

    >
    > The impression I get is that a lot of computer users have a rather
    > idealistic view of a modern technological probably inspired by Star
    > Trek, some kind of Vorsprung durch Technik outlook. If you are nice to
    > everybody no they will do you no harm. Well some employees join a
    > company with the opportunity to engage in some fraud in mind.


    If you are *nasty* to everybody, they *will* do you harm.

    The majority of folks are honest and trustworthy. There are exceptions,
    but you *handle* them as exceptions.

    Treat your employees like you don't trust them and must be virtually
    standing over them at all times to make sure they perform, and you badly
    damage morale and create a climate where people might look for ways to
    shaft you, simply because they feel you are trying to shaft them, and
    turnabout is fair play.

    If you interview me for a position with your company, and I get the
    impression you act like that, I'll decline your offer. I won't work for
    a boss who assumes going in he can't trust me. Among other things, it
    means *I* can't trust *him*.

    > Most business people are not of that kind, probably due to experiences
    > of being betrayed by others, employees included.
    > When the internet wasn't present there was less chance of distractions
    > on the desktop. The desire is not to stop employees going online, but
    > to monitor that they are not spending office time and resources in a
    > way that is of not benefit to the company.
    >
    > I'm sure is it now well known what happens at the office when there
    > are major sporting events.
    >
    > I know of cases where the installation of CCTV for instance has paid
    > for itself within days.
    >
    > Is it wrong for employers to seek to guard against such things?


    Not at all. What's wrong is assuming going in you can't trust your
    people, and must be Big Brother watching them.

    Most employees will do their jobs. You may hire an occasional problem,
    but you handle that on an exception basis. You don't penalize everybody
    *else* because you have a bad apple.

    People who aren't performing will be evident, and that's what
    performance reviews are for. You make clear when you hire them what the
    standards are for their position. You evaluate them at performance
    review time, based on the standards. If they aren't meeting the
    standards, they get a poor review, less (or *no*) raise, and a written
    warning that they will be terminated if they don't shape up. If they
    don't shape up, you *do* terminate them.

    And note, there should be plenty of informal feedback along the way. A
    performance review, good or bad, should not come as a *surprise* to the
    employee. They should have a pretty good idea going into the review
    what their boss thinks of them. I've seen cases where the employee
    thought all was well till he was called into the boss's office and
    fired. This is simple incompetence on the part of the boss. If he was
    *that* unhappy with the employee, he should have made it clear and
    demanded changes well before it got to be a cause for termination.

    None of this requires employee monitoring software on company PCs. If I
    have a guy who isn't getting his job done, I don't *care* that he's
    spending his time going to www.XXXrated.com, and downloading porn when
    he should be working. What he's doing *instead* of working is
    irrelevant. He's not working. All I care about is that he isn't doing
    the job, and I take steps accordingly.

    If the work isn't getting done, the first question you ask is "Why
    not?", and you don't assume the answer is "people are goofing off".

    We had a major problem at a former employer, and the SVP of our division
    called each of us in to sound us out on what was wrong and what to do
    about it. My response was basically:

    "When something goes wrong, the first question that gets asked is "Who
    f****d up? That's the wrong question. The question is what happened,
    and how do we change our procedures so it can't happen again.

    The folks who work here all want to do their jobs. Things haven't been
    getting done because it isn't clear who is *supposed* to do something,
    and everyone assumes someone else will take care of it. We need to make
    clear who is responsible for what, and that every task has an owner
    assigned to it.

    Also, *you* need to set an example. You're the boss. We all work for
    you. So-and-so is behaving the way she is to the folks she manages
    because she's afraid of what you'll say to her! You need to make it
    clear that we don't look for heads to roll when something goes wrong.
    We look to fix things so the problem can't happen again. You need to
    make that clear, and you need to demonstrate by your actions how we
    handle problems."

    "Interesting. Am I really perceived that way?"

    "Yes, Larry."

    We had a problem shortly after where he did precisely as I suggested,
    and I told him quite honestly after the fact that that was exactly what
    I meant when I made my comments, and I was proud to work for him. He
    was pleased and flattered. (I was relieved. It's always a worry when
    the boss wants to know what the problem is and the answer is in part
    "You are.")
    ______
    Dennis
     
    Dennis McCunney, Apr 28, 2007
    #12
  13. voipfc wrote:

    > When the internet wasn't present there was less chance of distractions
    > on the desktop. The desire is not to stop employees going online, but
    > to monitor that they are not spending office time and resources in a
    > way that is of not benefit to the company. [...]
    >
    > Is it wrong for employers to seek to guard against such things?


    Not at all - if you don't care about your employees working conditions, or the
    fact that pretty much all the competent people will get fed up and leave.

    In fact, all this network monitoring stuff is pretty darn sissy. Why don't you
    just hire a thug to walk around and beat up anyone who looks like they're
    thinking about goofing off?

    Harry.
     
    Harry Johnston, Apr 28, 2007
    #13
  14. voipfc

    Guest

    On Apr 28, 3:54 pm, Harry Johnston <> wrote:
    > voipfc wrote:
    > > When the internet wasn't present there was less chance of distractions
    > > on the desktop. The desire is not to stop employees going online, but
    > > to monitor that they are not spending office time and resources in a
    > > way that is of not benefit to the company. [...]

    >
    > > Is it wrong for employers to seek to guard against such things?

    >
    > Not at all - if you don't care about your employees working conditions, or the
    > fact that pretty much all the competent people will get fed up and leave.
    >
    > In fact, all this network monitoring stuff is pretty darn sissy. Why don't you
    > just hire a thug to walk around and beat up anyone who looks like they're
    > thinking about goofing off?
    >
    > Harry.


    It's amazing how people get offended when someone suggests ways of
    monitoring employees. You hear things like the above statement where
    they extend it to ridiculous lengths that are absurd. Yet if you the
    employer think those things of an employee, you are a evil monger.
    The fact is when employees know you are monitoring them, it tends to
    keep them honest. In environments with no restrictions, it is common
    for people to take advantage. Just because you monitor what people
    do, doesn't mean you are beating them up nor does it mean you will
    take action on every non-work related activity. However, if you
    cannot track them, it is hard to establish where their time is going
    and what it is being spent on. By the way, I am not a manager nor an
    employer. I have been both in the past. Current;y I work in an
    organization that monitors my activity. While I do plenty of personal
    stuff, I have never been called to task for it. However, others have
    been because they crossed the line. Did they get fired? No, they were
    told to knock it off and they did. Did some resent it enough to
    leave, yep. But I say go for them. Not everyone can deal with it.
    The company I work for has not laid off a single employee in the 9
    years I have been there. As a matter of fact I have only seen five
    people get fire for cause. Each of them was given fair warning and
    they refused to do as they were told. Throughout the hard times and
    good times, our company has vowed to not let people go. We even hired
    people when other companies were laying off. I have gotten bonuses
    nearly every quarter. Don't get me wrong we have issues. But for a
    company with nearly 150 IT people and roughly 1500 overall employees,
    they are very good to their people. They can be because they monitor
    us. They know what we do, and set boundaries. Just beacuse they ahve
    the tools to discipline people doesn't mean they will at every
    infraction.
     
    , Apr 29, 2007
    #14
  15. voipfc

    MikeR Guest

    voipfc wrote:
    > The impression I get is that a lot of computer users have a rather
    > idealistic view of a modern technological probably inspired by Star
    > Trek, some kind of Vorsprung durch Technik outlook. If you are nice to
    > everybody no they will do you no harm. Well some employees join a
    > company with the opportunity to engage in some fraud in mind.
    >
    > Most business people are not of that kind, probably due to experiences
    > of being betrayed by others, employees included.
    > When the internet wasn't present there was less chance of distractions
    > on the desktop. The desire is not to stop employees going online, but
    > to monitor that they are not spending office time and resources in a
    > way that is of not benefit to the company.
    >
    > I'm sure is it now well known what happens at the office when there
    > are major sporting events.
    >
    > I know of cases where the installation of CCTV for instance has paid
    > for itself within days.
    >
    > Is it wrong for employers to seek to guard against such things?


    It's not wrong for a business to protect it's own interests, but the method can, and
    most often is a "Beatings will continue until morale improves" approach.

    If a workers direct supervisor doesn't know what his staff is doing and can't be
    bothered to get off his duff to actually walk around and talk to them, and be
    interested in what they're doing, then he needs to be re-educated or replaced. That
    goes all the way up the chain.
    Mike
     
    MikeR, Apr 30, 2007
    #15
  16. voipfc

    voipfc Guest

    On 28 Apr, 14:50, voipfc <> wrote:
    > On 27 Apr, 19:56, Dennis McCunney <>
    > wrote:
    >
    >
    >
    > > voipfcwrote:
    > > > On Apr 27, 6:09 pm, Dennis McCunney <>
    > > > wrote:
    > > >> voipfcwrote:
    > > >>> What are the best utilities that monitor staff desktop activity?
    > > >> Google is your friend, but I'm curious: why do you think you *need* to
    > > >> do this?

    >
    > > > The purpose is to ensure that the main office programs such as the
    > > > Office programs, quickbooks etc those relevant to the work is what the
    > > > spend most of their time in. If staff don't appear to finishing their
    > > > work on time, it is important to now what they are really doing.

    >
    > > The simple solution for that is a standard image rolled out to all
    > > company PCs that only includes authorized software, and setting the user
    > > accounts as "Power Users", who can run installed software but not
    > > install their own. "So and so is a lazy sod who is goofing of on
    > > company time" is not the first assumption I make in such cases.

    >
    > > Granted, if they don't finish their work on time, you need to know why.
    > > But assuming going in they are goofing off and doing other things
    > > instead of working is a questionable idea. There may be other reasons
    > > entirely, like too much work to get it all done, or procedures that get
    > > in the way.

    >
    > > Going with a monitoring solution like this certainly does one thing: it
    > > communicates to the employees "We don't trust you to do your work unless
    > > someone is standing over your shoulder, so Big Brother is watching you!"

    >
    > > Speaking personally, I wouldn't want to work for an employer who held
    > > that attitude. Would you?

    >
    > > And depending upon where the business is located, you may be legally
    > > required to tell the employees such measures are in place and their
    > > activities may be monitored.

    >
    > > At my employer, there was a standard image with approved software rolled
    > > out to all PCs, and employees who needed something non-standard needed
    > > approval from their manager and a request to IT to install it. There
    > > was also a company policy handbook that specified acceptable use of the
    > > resources that everyone had to read and sign a paper acknowledging they
    > > understood. Employees who performed poorly got bad performance reviews,
    > > and if improvement didn't happen, they got terminated. No employee
    > > monitoring software was ever deployed because it was not seen as needed.

    >
    > > Efforts spent making sure employees aren't goofing off on company time
    > > are better applied to making sure the employees *can* do their work
    > > without unnecessary impediments, and making sure the company is a place
    > > people like working for and *want* to do their work.
    > > ______
    > > Dennis

    >
    > The impression I get is that a lot of computer users have a rather
    > idealistic view of a modern technological probably inspired by Star
    > Trek, some kind of Vorsprung durch Technik outlook. If you are nice to
    > everybody no they will do you no harm. Well some employees join a
    > company with the opportunity to engage in some fraud in mind.
    >
    > Most business people are not of that kind, probably due to experiences
    > of being betrayed by others, employees included.
    > When the internet wasn't present there was less chance of distractions
    > on the desktop. The desire is not to stop employees going online, but
    > to monitor that they are not spending office time and resources in a
    > way that is of not benefit to the company.
    >
    > I'm sure is it now well known what happens at the office when there
    > are major sporting events.
    >
    > I know of cases where the installation of CCTV for instance has paid
    > for itself within days.
    >
    > Is it wrong for employers to seek to guard against such things?


    One thing I need to impress upon is that monitoring tools are not
    necessarily necessarily spying tools. Employees are not being secretly
    spied upon if they are made to understanding that their computer
    activities are monitored and that any activities harmful or against
    the company policy will be noted, even if they are not monitored in
    real time. If they also conduct any activities that are personal or of
    an embarrassing nature those will also be noted.

    It is then up to them to decide what sort of private activities they
    are willing to conduct on company systems.
     
    voipfc, Apr 30, 2007
    #16
  17. * voipfc wrote, On 4/30/2007 10:48 AM:

    >> Is it wrong for employers to seek to guard against such things?


    It's wrong to assume going in your employees can't be trusted and must
    be watched. There will be exceptions, but they *are* exceptions, and
    you don't need monitoring tools to deal with them.

    > One thing I need to impress upon is that monitoring tools are not
    > necessarily necessarily spying tools. Employees are not being secretly
    > spied upon if they are made to understanding that their computer
    > activities are monitored and that any activities harmful or against
    > the company policy will be noted, even if they are not monitored in
    > real time. If they also conduct any activities that are personal or of
    > an embarrassing nature those will also be noted.
    >
    > It is then up to them to decide what sort of private activities they
    > are willing to conduct on company systems.


    If you feel you must to this at all, the only ethical way is to tell
    everyone monitoring tools are in place and may be used. (Depending upon
    your location, you may be legally *required* to tell them.)

    My belief is that such tools are normally unnecessary and are counter
    productive, as they damage employee morale and lead to resentment that
    might trigger exactly the behavior you wish to prevent. I've explained
    why above.

    I'd think long and hard before I actually did this, and the only
    circumstance I might do it was in a case where I suspect illegal
    activity by an employee that could threaten the company, and I needed
    hard evidence to hand to the authorities.
    ______
    Dennis
     
    Dennis McCunney, May 1, 2007
    #17
  18. voipfc

    Ed Metcalfe Guest

    "Dennis McCunney" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > Ed Metcalfe wrote:
    >> "Ron Martell" <> wrote in message
    >> news:...
    >>> <snip>
    >>> <applause>
    >>> <snip>

    >>
    >> I'll second that! A *very* well put case, and one I wholeheartedly agree
    >> with.

    >
    > Thanks to both of you. This is kind of a pet peeve of mine.
    >
    > Robert Tonwnsend, in "Up the Organization", went on about "Theory X" vs
    > "Theory Y" organizations. "Theory X" organizations implicitly assumed
    > that people didn't want to work, would slack off at every opportunity,
    > and needed to be stood over. "Theory Y" organizations assumed that
    > working was as natural as eating, sleeping, and breathing, and that most
    > organizations with problems had made it unnecessarily difficult to get
    > the work done, and needed to rethink their policies and procedures.
    >
    > Townsend did his best to create Theory Y organizations. He was the CEO
    > at Avis Rent a Car during their famous "We Try Harder" days, when Avis
    > came from having Problems to being a solid number 2 in the industry and
    > having regular revenue and profitability increases. "Up the
    > Organization" was in part the story of what he did at Avis, and why, and
    > it's one of the two best books on management I've read. (The other is
    > Peter F. Drucker's "Management: Tasks, Practices, and Responsibilities")
    >
    > When I see questions like voipfc's, I think "Theory X", and my first
    > question is "Why do you assume your employees are trying to goof off on
    > you, and *need* such a setup in place?" The usual reasons for such
    > assumptions have little to do with actual employee performance, and
    > everything to do with insecurity on the part of the manager.
    >
    >> Ed Metcalfe.

    > ______
    > Dennis
    >
    >


    Dennis,

    For me too.

    It still surprises me how many employers do not understand the basic
    principal - treat people like adults and *most* of them will behave like
    adults, treat them like kids and a lot of them will behave like kids.

    Ed Metcalfe.
     
    Ed Metcalfe, May 3, 2007
    #18
  19. voipfc

    BrianWard

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2012
    Messages:
    1
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    It is strange that no one is asking this question anymore, when I think it is getting more and more timely. Monitoring employees is not the same as spying. They are entitled to being notified about this and knowing when they are and aren't under surveillance. I am using a simple software called 'my team monitor' to do this job for me. This program is switched on by the employee when he starts the shift and off at the end, and in the meantime it logs the number of keystrokes and mouse clicks and it takes screenshots. This way I see what they are working on and how much activity has been going on, but I am not recording anything that is private or confidential. The program is free at myteammonitor dot com.
     
    BrianWard, Jun 29, 2012
    #19
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