Businesses vs Employee Privacy for mobile workforce management. Where is the balance? Personal privacy at work is a topic of ongoing debate, From a legal standpoint, employers have the right to monitor what an employee is doing at the workplace but is there a balanced approach that can ensure that workers get their fair share or privacy while employers get what they want - worker productivity? When your workforce is based in one locaiton, it is obviously much easier to monitor them but when you have a mobile workforce that is scattered across many locations and always changing location, how do you keep track of what your employees are doing and more importantly how do you improve their productivity? Today, there are over 60 million ﬁeld technicians in the US, who are on the move constantly to various locations to ﬁx and repair appliances, machines and other equipment. There are also millions of workers delivering goods and mobile sales people who all form part of a growing contract workforce that is typically outsourced. The employees are therefore not their own but from another company. In such scenarios, how do you really monitor employees in a manner in which you can help them better perform their jobs helping you to maximize productivity? We are not talking about monitoring employees computers to ﬁnd out which websites they visited or what applications they are running. For a mobile workforce, it is knowing where the employees are at a given point in time, are they running late or are they on track to reach their service or delivery destination, how much time they spent doing the job and where should they be sent next after they complete the current job? For example, if another job opens up close to their current assignment, they can quickly be redirected to the new location. When you have tens or hundreds or even thousands of employees in the ﬁeld, you can imagine how complex the real-time optimization of job assignment becomes.
It is important for companies to able to have control over this process for many reasons: 1.
It helps them provide better customer service, informing customers about delays before it is too late. This is critical to ﬁeld service businesses.
Improves worker productivity. Even if each worker can perform one extra job every day with better optimization, you easily boost productivity by over 20%.
Improves vital parameters such as service time, commute time, number of jobs completed per day and other
Helps with automation of the time cards process
Integrates with payroll systems on the back-end providing more automation into the workﬂow
Provides location / geospatial Intelligence and analytics to help improve overall operations
The issue of privacy in monitoring ﬁeld employees is still an issue that needs to be addressed. Many companies today allow employees to use their own phone to check company emails and perform other basic tasks with their own device. Also known as BYOD or Bring Your Own Device, this notion has been adopted by many organizations and is fairly common practice today. The key to managing mobile workers is to know where they are at a given point in time and enabling headquarters to monitor this on a geographic map. Known as geo-tracking, this process enables headquarters to track employees, communicate with them via SMS and automatically get valuable information such as service time, commute time and other parameters that can help the organization improve their service over time. Just like permission based marketing where the consumer gives you permission to send emails to them about their products or solutions, permission based privacy provides employees with an option to switch oﬀ tracking when they are oﬀ work and also provides a means for them to approve their tracking during work hours. A double opt-in scheme enables this to happen perfectly. When monitoring the mobile workforce, it is imperative for businesses to keep privacy issues in mind while explaining to employees the beneﬁts of tracking them during work hours in order to make it easier for them to do their jobs and automating certain processes for them such as time cards and expense reports. Mobile workforce management and optimization is a critical core competence that ﬁeld service and delivery organizations have to master in order to be successful while addressing privacy issues.
Contact Us firstname.lastname@example.org +1-415-49-MYGEO Abaqus Inc. 530 University Avenue Palo Alto, CA 94301 USA
Learn how myGeoTracking addresses the issue of privacy in monitoring field employees. Our mobile workforce management solution is equipped w...