Employee Monitoring Devices Can Be Found (Or Not) In Many Workplaces: Report

Ever get that creeping feeling that you’re being watched – even at work?

Well, you could be onto something if a new report from Bloomberg has any merit.

Tiny sensors used to monitor employees’ whereabouts have been installed in up to 15 percent of Fortune 500 companies, estimates Bloomberg.

Tracking systems like OccupEye and Enlighted are often implemented throughout workspaces – including under employees’ desks or in meeting rooms – and billed as methods of monitoring a building's lighting and heating.

Amid reports that numerous companies were using the devices last year, employees at the British newspaper The Daily Telegraph found some under their desks and demanded they be removed. Despite this, Bloomberg says they are still being used in many workplaces.

“Most people, when they walk into buildings, don’t even notice them,” said Enlighted CEO Joe Costello, adding that the devices can be concealed anywhere, from under the desk to inside lights to even employee ID badges.

The systems are advertised as tools that promote office optimization, which can ensure a business isn’t wasting money on lighting, heating or air-conditioning in spaces that aren’t being used. The sensors can gather data on how often employees are seated at their desks and can learn when certain spaces are empty, with the end goal allegedly being to cut an office’s energy bill by up to 25 percent.  

The devices can also be used to collect information on employee behavior, like how often they get up to talk to other employees.

This kind of data can apparently be used when redesigning spaces to help staff communicate better – or, you know, to keep tabs on how much your employees are slacking off.

Impromptu office-wide scavenger hunt, anyone?

h/t IFLScience, The Guardian


Before Nikki Furrer was a cannabis writer and professional, she had another dream job: owning an independent bookstore. While she says her business venture as a bookseller was ultimately untenable, it did open her eyes to how much she enjoys “matching the reader to the exact book they’re craving.” This zest for matchmaking is evident in her book 'A Woman’s Guide to Cannabis.' As the title suggests, 'A Woman’s Guide to Cannabis' is for women who are curious about cannabis. A more appropriate title, however, might have been a 'A Beginner’s Guide to Cannabis.' Though Furrer touches on applications for the plant that are specific to women—relief of menstrual pain or beauty (though her belief that cannabis is a beauty product because it makes you appear more well-rested seems relevant to both men and women—much of the information in the book is relevant to anyone who is totally inexperienced with cannabis, apprehensive about trying it and needs a run down of the basics.

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