Policy of the workplace
Since there are legal implications and qualitative implications when an employer must monitor their employees, it is imperative that employers provide proper monitor tools. In an article from Lewis Johs, it had been stated that the employers must have measures to avoid liability if their employees where found out for dishonesty and wrong doing. First is the Monitor Usage, the use of software and other technological tools to analyze employee’s computers, websites visits and emails.
This does not only include computer monitoring but it also includes the activities that the employees are doing in the workplace. Second is that companies must develop computer monitoring policies. The policies must include the usage of the computer especially the internet and the email. It must also address the usage of company equipment and electronic equipment. Lastly, if the management had doubts regarding suspicious acts of a certain employee, they must investigate. Having the three factors stated above is important to avoid legal liability.
Privacy Issues must be also handled by the management. It is hard for management to give privacy to their employees if their monitoring tools would include email monitoring because nowadays, employees use their e-mails for personal management. So in order to avoid privacy issues, the company must inform their employees about the monitoring system. There are several methods that the company must do in order to avoid the violation of privacy. Goodmans had shown several methods to avoid privacy violation.
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The same as the avoidance of legal liability, comprehensive written policy is also important in addressing privacy violation in the workplace. The policy must address expectations of employees and should be regarded to their right to privacy and the employees must also be educated and informed about the monitoring policy of the workplace. The policy statement must describe the purpose of any surveillance or monitoring and include a statement of the appropriate uses which can be made from the employer’s resources.
Employers must also include the employee’s consent to surveillance and monitoring and consideration on rights, and prohibitions provided for inexisting collective agreements or employment contracts before taking any steps to introduce policies or introduce surveillance mechanisms in the workplace. For establishing a video surveillance the law indicates that the employer must have reasonable grounds to establish such surveillance and intrusiveness must be kept to a minimum. Since there are also times that the employer is monitoring the employee even outside the workplace.
Employers must make sure that the have compelling grounds to engage in any surveillance outside of the workplace. Complete disregard in this matter would result to total intrusion of privacy. It is the employer’s duty to monitor and determine the actions of its employees because this does not only affect the company’s financial status but it also affects the company’s reputation. The most practical approach in workplace monitoring is the use of overt surveillance. Both the aspect of legal law and privacy issues must be addressed to build mutual trust in the workplace.
Mutual trust is a part of communication between the employer and employees. It is hard to work in an environment where one does not trust each other and that suspicion is present in anything that the employee does. Through the implementation of the workplace monitoring policies, the employer is able to express his intent to monitor the activity of the employee. Before implementing policies, employers must consider the privacy rights of the employees.
REFERENCES Malachowski, D. (2005), Wasted Time At Work Costing Companies Billions. Retrieved September 10, 2005 from Salary. com Website www.salary.com