Employee monitoring is slowly becoming a norm in companies around the world and across industries. It provides companies with an additional security layer when it comes to insider threats, but it also helps with increasing employee productivity. There are many positive sides to using such software, but there are also negative ones which you should anticipate and overcome.
When selecting a perfect employee monitoring tool, employers are often faced with a huge selection of features they can use to monitor various aspects of employees’ work. One of such features is the stealth more, so we’re going to show you what it is and why you should or shouldn’t use it.
What Does It Mean to Monitor Employees in Stealth Mode?
When a monitoring software has the stealth mode option it means that it can work on your employees’ computers without them knowing about it. Even when they pull up the list of running processes, the name of the software will be masked to resemble some of the usual Windows or macOS processes. Therefore, only the most knowledgeable employees will be able to detect it.
It also doesn’t slow down the computers in any way, so employees won’t be thinking that anything suspicious is going on.
Even though this feature is very useful in some cases, in others it isn’t, and we’ll share some pros and cons on the topic in the next section.
Pros of Stealth Employee Monitoring
Stealth mode is most commonly used when employers suspect someone on their team of malpractice and they want to acquire evidence. In most countries, covert monitoring because of suspicion is completely legal, and the evidence can be presented in court. When you want to catch someone red-handed, you don’t want them knowing that you’re tracking them.
If employee monitoring without prior notification or consent is allowed in your country, you can install the software even if you just want to track productivity. Since your employees won’t be aware of it, they’ll keep behaving as usual, and you’ll get realistic data.
You can also use stealth mode when you don’t want your employees to have influence over what you’re tracking. When they’re able to see the software, they usually have the option to start and stop it as they wish, but if the software is hidden they won’t be able to do it.
Cons of Stealth Employee Monitoring
Whether it’s warranted or not, secret employee tracking won’t go well with your employees. It’s inevitable that someone will find out at some point, and then everyone will know. You can expect angry team members, who are ready to leave you for another employer.
Also, your workers won’t have access to their data if you’re tracking them in secret. This means they won’t be able to measure and analyze their own behaviour, and work to improve it. Instead, you and other team leaders will need to make sure there’s an improvement plan in place for everyone, and that they’re closely following it.
In the end, there’s no way to track time on projects and tasks if your tracker is hidden from your employees. In most cases, employees must click start/stop if they’re tracking time on tasks, but in this situation it’s impossible.
Before you decide whether to monitor your team’s activities in stealth mode or not, you should carefully think about these factors and weigh in the advantages and disadvantages of both options. It’s the only way to determine which option is the best one for your team.
What do you think? Are you for or against stealth monitoring? Why? Have you tried it before? What are your experiences?