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Tracking Productivity Through Monitoring Software

What is Productivity Tracking and Monitoring?

How much easier would your job be if you could know — really, truly understand — what people need to do their best work? This is precisely what productivity tracking is for. And tracking employee productivity is equally effective for in-office, remote and hybrid teams.

Employee productivity tracking is the process of capturing and analyzing day-to-day work activities to identify patterns, barriers and opportunities for improvements. It focuses on how employees get work done and equips leaders with important insights — ones you can use to adjust responsibilities, tools and workflows to achieve greater productivity and efficiency. Most importantly, it’s a strategy that keeps on giving. Continually tracking and monitoring employee productivity is one of THE best ways to create a culture of continuous improvement.

So, how can you start tracking productivity for your employees? Having an objective measure of employee productivity is the first step. That’s where productivity monitoring software comes in.

By using productivity monitoring software and tools to track employee workflows, management can easily see which workers are doing a stellar job. This information can then be used to coach underperforming employees while rewarding superstars. You’ll not only keep top performers motivated, but help spread productivity throughout the company too.

Looking at data from productivity monitoring software can also help employers pinpoint areas where some employees may need guidance.

The bottom line is this: Making sure your company is running at peak performance is critical in today’s competitive business landscape, and productivity monitoring is how cutting-edge businesses are staying ahead of the curve. In this post, we’ll discuss the fundamentals of productivity monitoring along with helpful information about the use of tools to track employee productivity. Some employee productivity tracking tools like ActivTrak even allow managers to give employees access to a dashboard where the worker can track their own progress, which helps them see when they’re on pace to meet goals or if they need to make changes in order to achieve their objectives.

Ready to learn more? Let’s take a look at the basics of productivity tracking:


The Difference Between Productivity Tracking and Surveillance

Productivity tracking software often gets criticized as being an Orwellian measure taken by overbearing managers. The harsh depiction of this valuable software as a surveillance tool couldn’t be further from the truth. In reality, productivity tracking software helps managers support employees by identifying inefficient workflows and signs of burnout. Using insights from a productivity monitoring tool, managers can provide support for employees based on the unique challenges they’re facing — which also benefits the organization as a whole through happier, more productive employees.

Depending on what productivity tracking software or tools you use, the benefits are endless — particularly for companies looking to increase revenue and boost security. Need to improve workflow efficiency? Use productivity monitoring software to analyze employee activities. Or foster a more productive working environment with a productivity leaderboard to help boost motivation.

Looking to protect your company from insider threats? Check your productivity tracking software to make sure employees aren’t doing anything thoughtless with company information. And if you’re worried about maintaining a healthy relationship with employees, being upfront with them about the software you’ll be implementing can go a long way. We’ll dig into this in a little more detail later, but using a defined internet policy can help create clear boundaries and expectations. It also serves to build trust between the employer and employee.


Advantages of Productivity Tracking

Reduce Wasted Time

According to Zippia, Americans waste an average of 2.9 hours each day at work — which costs businesses an average of $1.7 million per year for every 100 employees they have. Some of these wasted hours are from necessary breaks, though others may be from distractions or inefficient workflows that create a productivity lapse.

Productivity tracking software can help you curb these wasteful internet practices. By combining features such as live activity monitoring and website blocking, productivity monitoring software help keep employees engaged without continually looking over their shoulders.

Prevent Security Breaches

Making sure employees don’t leak proprietary data is another essential function of productivity monitoring software. At a time when employee negligence is the main cause of data breaches, this is crucial. Administrators can keep an eye on electronic communications, such as email and internet usage, to prevent unauthorized access or sharing of sensitive information.

Using productivity tracking software can help employers get an early warning about these dangerous activities taking place — including unintentional actions that pose a security risk. With features like remote screenshots and automated alarms, admins can also use workforce productivity software to track of any breach of sensitive information.

Help people realize their full potential

Managers can use productivity trackers to set goals and monitor progress for employees — which supports the employees growth and development over time. Some tools like ActivTrak even allow managers to give employees access to a dashboard where the worker can track their own progress, which helps them see when they’re on pace to meet goals or if they need to make changes in order to achieve their objectives.


Potential Productivity Tracking Issues

Privacy Issues

Some employees may be concerned about privacy when productivity tracking software is implemented. Which is understandable. After all, the idea of someone looking over their shoulders can be unsettling when it isn’t explained correctly. But monitoring employees is not the goal, and it’s important to explain this to your team. In addition, give employees advanced notice of your plan as well as how you’re going to be protecting their personal data. Let them know that their personal information is not being collected.

Things such as phone number, bank info, and passwords aren’t going to be useful for increasing productivity. Some tools intentionally blur or redact personally identifiable information (PII) such as this. Making sure your employees’ PII is safe should be a top priority when searching for the perfect productivity tracking software.

Burnout Risks

Some employees can get stressed at the thought of having their activity constantly monitored. This stress could lead to employees overworking themselves, which can eventually lead to decreased productivity and increased turnover. Thankfully, this issue can be easily avoided.

Be upfront with your employees and explain precisely what you’re looking to get out of productivity monitoring software. Elaborate on the benefits, and let them know how you’ll be using information. Put simply: Don’t be overbearing and drive employees away. Instead, explain simply and clearly that the goal is to help empower everyone to do their best work. In some cases, companies have used worker productivity software to let people know when it’s time to do less or take time off so they can refresh. By identifying early signs of burnout, managers can alleviate stress for employees and reduce turnover.

In addition to being candid, lay out exactly what you expect of your team. As previously mentioned, creating an internet usage policy and going over it with employees can relieve anxiety and prepare your organization for a smooth transition into using productivity monitoring software.

Legal Concerns

Though there’s a good deal of information available on the subject, there are many common misunderstandings when it comes to the legality of productivity monitoring software.
The sheer number of laws describing what’s legal when it comes to tracking activities can make it a very overwhelming topic. In the United States, as long as a company owns the computers, they’re allowed to monitor employees. The EU has different laws that require employers to be more forthright with their plans to implement productivity monitoring software.

To make sure you’re covering all bases, research the laws in your area individually. Before you decide on a productivity monitoring software, seek proper legal counsel regarding the laws in your area.


What are the Benefits of Productivity Tracking Software?

What can your company gain from using employee productivity tracking tools? Put simply, a lot. You can identify what tools employees need to do their best work, and save costs by cutting tools that aren’t being frequently utilized. You’ll likely discover which times of day they’re most productive and may even learn which teams work best together. This type of data can be invaluable. It not only helps streamline operations, but also allows leaders to distribute workloads more evenly and take some pressure off overworked employees.


How to Get Started with Productivity Monitoring Software

Before you start researching productivity tracking software or tools to track employee productivity, you should first step back and look at your goals.. Do you want to cut costs? Increase employee productivity? Spread workloads evenly? Determining your objectives first will help ensure you’re looking for the right set of features.

Once you’ve defined your goals, the next step is to explore functionality. Here are some features you may want to think about when researching productivity monitoring software:

  • Activity reporting
  • Flexible settings
  • Productivity reports
  • Location insights
  • Time tracking
  • Technology usage
  • Data privacy

Once you’ve found a few options that fit your checklist, you’ll want to trim the list down to your finalists. From here, you can check out additional factors to make sure you find the perfect software for your organization. These factors could include:

  • Ease of installation
  • Payment plans
  • Learning curves
  • Customization
  • Customer support availability
  • Hardware requirements

After you’ve found the ideal program, prepare your team. When introducing them to your new productivity tracking software, you can go over a few things we’ve mentioned earlier such as:

  • What the software is
  • How you’re planning to implement it
  • Why it’s necessary
  • How it will benefit the company
  • How privacy will be protected

It may sound like a lot, but in reality these steps can be achieved in a matter of days. If you follow the advice in this article, you should be well on your way to improving your organization’s productivity for good.


ActivTrak’s Productivity Monitoring Software

Improving productivity requires an understanding of how your organization operates. ActivTrak’s simple user interface is designed to help teams get the clearest picture of how work is done.

With ActivTrak’s productivity monitoring software, you’ll have all the metrics at all the right times. It’s easy to install and the data is available within minutes.

Here are some things you can do with ActivTrak’s productivity monitoring software:

  • Compare remote & in-office productivity
  • Quickly spot burnout & disengagement
  • Optimize processes & technology usage
  • Assess capacity & balance workloads
  • Understand the productivity impact of organizational change
  • Know your top performer’s habits and coach those patterns to other team members.

Ready to see if ActivTrak’s productivity monitoring software is right for you? Create a free account right now.

More Productivity Tracker Resources

How Employee Monitoring Can Boost Employee Performance

Breaking down why implementing productivity tracking software can give your company a boost in productivity.

How Employees Can Use Productivity Monitoring to Boost Their Own Output

The story of how Grammarly gave their employees the tool of time tracking and the option of monitoring their own time created an uptick in productivity. Read the article from Inc

Using ActivTrak to Increase Your Company’s Overall Productivity

A true story showing how productivity monitoring can boost productivity and improve the relationship between employees and management. Read the article from ActivTrak

How Productivity Monitoring Software Can Help You Understand Your Company

A look into how productivity monitoring software can help you understand how your company functions and which programs employees use the most. Read the article from ActivTrak

Promoting Employee Monitoring in the Office

An insightful article that investigates if employee monitoring is right for you and how to implement it if you choose to do so. Read the article from Huffington Post

How to Utilize User Behavior Analytics to Your Advantage

A helpful guide on how a company can use user behavior analytics from productivity monitoring software to improve their organization. Read the article from ActivTrak

A Project Managers Guide to Productivity Tracking

A short read that gives the perspective of a project manager explaining how valuable productivity tracking can be. Read the article from Medium

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