A fairly common obstacle for managers and human resources staff is dealing with time management for other employees. For most businesses the old saying “time is money” tends to be true, and as a general rule, minimising time spent on each particular task will improve productivity. In a modern working environment, it is common for time management software to be employed to this end.
The fact is that digital technology has changed the way so many businesses work, there is a need for new methods of controlling and monitoring staff productivity. Now it is possible for many employees to work from home, even doing jobs that a few years ago would have been restricted to a communal office environment. Online communication channels are now so accessible it is easy for people to work remotely and be just as effective, but it is equally easy to become distracted by the constant buzz of activity from many different channels.
It is also harder for employers to know for sure what their employees are up to while they’re on the clock, without physically being able to see them. This can lead to concerns and trust issues, which any HR expert will know to be a significant long term risk regarding motivation and productivity. This is why time management software can be an effective tool for both managers and workers, allowing people to manage their own time more effectively under the guidance of automated software, while also giving managers the opportunity to check and monitor when necessary.
For example, Time Doctor is a common application used by many businesses for just such purposes. It works via a central system that can be logged into and checked by managers, connected to each remote employee’s computer via desktop software. As well as allowing workers to sign in and out indicating the time they spend at work, it also allows them to select individual tasks and tracks the time spent on each one. Screenshots are taken at random to provide evidence to the main monitoring system, and warnings and information are automatically displayed to help users manage their time better and avoid distractions. The overall aim is to maintain the same level of effectiveness working from home as in an office that is overseen by others.
The use of software to monitor employees has garnered some controversy due to the potentially intrusive nature of the process. Being scrutinised remotely at all times can be uncomfortable and even reduce motivation levels due to a perceived lack of trust between workers and managers, so this is something to bear in mind. However, HR departments interested in rolling out software like this should be able to find ways of presenting it in a positive way, since the overall objective benefits everyone.