January 30th, 2002, 10:48 PM
Re: Email monitoring in the workplace
In a sense, it could be both yes and no. If you are losing lots of productivity from five or six employees, then it may actually be worthwhile to pay someone to spend time monitoring emails. Keep also in mind that most of the monitoring could be done from shellscripts or something similar depending on the mail server. I suppose, as with every situation, that it really does depend on what level of monitoring is going on. If you're picking up every email that contains the word 'sex', then sure, I'm for it, because that sort of thing isn't completely normal, but if you're paying someone or using some software to monitor ALL email, then sure, it's the company's dime, they should be allowed to be thrifty. After all, you work to earn money and be productive, not to cavort or chat.
Originally posted by hot_ice
Now that this is all clear, I will point out my opinion. I believe that it is simply wrong! Monitoring employee's emails will not benefit anyone in the long run. Firstly, they are trying to see if workers are 'wasting time' using email for non-work related purposes. Isn't monitoring of these emails 'wasting time' too?? Who is going to monitor the emails? The boss? Surely he has enough on his plate.
Lame argument. Someone who is paid to do a job should do the job IMO. They shouldn't be slouching off and doing nothing but emailing people.
Secondly, it makes workplace environment feel threatening to the employee. If you know that the company you are working for is monitoring your email, everytime you send one you will be thinking about this and wondering 'should I send this'? It creates a burdon on the employee and reduces job satisfaction, thus, affecting proctuctivity in a negative way.
By design, email monitoring isn't for people who send 10 personal emails per day, it's for people who send 30-40 personal emails per day, and do nothing other than email for a few hours. It's designed to catch people who *are* losing productivity and *aren't* doing their work because they're spending too much time emailing.
If I were a manager/boss at a company, I would simply expect my employees to do their job. If the job gets done, what does it matter if they sent 10 personal emails during the day. What if John got the job done and sent 10 personal emails. Sally isn't performing well, but she doesn't send email. What will the purpose of email scanning echieve in this situation?? The more personal emails you send, the better the job you do will be??
All in all, it's not up to you to decide. You're allowed to think it's wrong, but it's not your business, it's the person who runs/owns the company's business. If they want to 'waste money' in this fashion because they believe it will increase productivity, all the power to them. It is, after all, their organization to run.
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