People Analytics. Yes, people being analyzed!


As if it wasn’t bad enough that Facebook, Google, Whatsapp etc. store every kind of personal information about you, today, Volometrix has successfully raised $12 million for a people analytics service. Yes, you read that right. An analytical tool for your employer to monitor how you spend your time at work.

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The Seattle-based Volometrix market their campaign and service as a wonderful product and they mean for it to be solely about how much time an employee spends in a sales teams communicating with customers, or how different teams work together (or not). Whereby they also state that all of the data is collected right from the corporate communications system (even e-mails and instant messaging) and then anonymized. However, I myself would feel that my privacy is being invaded and compromised. Some employees can do nothing productive for 2 hours straight, and then deliver top-notch quality whilst being under pressure (time-constraint/deadlines etc.) in half an hour for example. What would be the consequences of that?

In the day and age that ‘flex-working’ is increasingly gaining in popularity, this people analytical tool gives off a wrong vibe even though Volometrix sugarcoats their service. Should everyone work in the same fashion and manner? I care to differ.

“The idea is to use this data from emails and calendar events to help businesses streamline their operations.” Would employees that don’t fit that idea of ‘streamlining the operations’ be fired? What are the deeper lying motives?

Even though I am highly critical of such a service, I do believe that for some companies this could be useful. Companies that are very lean, have standard-routine processes and basically don’t waste any time. But still, I wonder. Will it just serve as a tool/service for an employer to monitor the time being spent on certain aspects of the daily operations and no further implications follow. Or, are employers in the future going to set a standard of ‘X’ and ‘Y’ amount of time that should be spent on certain operations, and if the employee doesn’t meet that standard he or she shall be fired?

What would you say, ‘Yay, or Nay‘?

Sources:

Lardinois, F. (2014). “VoloMetrix raises $12M for its people analytics service”. Accessed on 11/10/2014, at: http://techcrunch.com/2014/10/13/volometrix-raises-12m-for-its-people-analytics-service/

Romano, B. (2014). “Volometrix raises 12M to market people analytics software”. Accessed on 11/10/2014, at:http://www.xconomy.com/seattle/2014/10/13/volometrix-raises-12m-to-market-people-analytics-software/

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One response to “People Analytics. Yes, people being analyzed!”

  1. 370285bg says :

    Nay!

    Can only imagine this being implemented at my current job. On the one hand, it would be great to see how you are performing compared to your colleagues (if you’re doing better of course). People might even start to work better.

    It works and is necessary in certain industries and professions. People in sales for example might actually get fired when not reaching their targets.

    On the other hand, I think that this creates unwanted tention on the work floor for the long-term. As you mentioned as well, everyone works differently.

    The solution contributes to a performance driven work environment. Creating a performance driven work environment comes with many challenges, such as, reluctance from employees, setting realistic targets, the cost of monitoring etcetera.

    Conclusion: People might even work better, but still i wouldn’t want this at my current job.

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