Employee Monitoring, User Behavior Analytics

How to Monitor User Activity

By Veriato Team

Every company monitors their employees to some extent. In the past, companies may have relied solely on time sheets and surveillance footage to keep an eye on their employees. But these tools cannot be used to track what employees are doing on their company-owned computers, smartphones, and tablets. To monitor these devices, managers must turn to more sophisticated tools such as monitoring software.

A growing number of companies now use monitoring software to keep tabs on their employees. In 2018, over half of the 239 corporations that were surveyed were currently monitoring their employees’ digital activity. This number grew to 62% just one year later. Based on this surge in popularity, it’s clear that every manager should know how to monitor user activity with the right software.

How Does User Monitoring Software Work?

You can install monitoring software on any company-owned device. The software can be remotely deployed, which means you won’t need to be in possession of the device in order to set it up.

Once it is installed, it will track and record a wide range of digital activities on each of your employee’s devices. Some of the digital activities the software tracks include:

  • Instant messages
  • Emails
  • Social media usage
  • File downloads
  • File uploads
  • Web site history
  • Searches
  • Application/program usage
  • Keystrokes
  • Network connections
  • USB device usage
  • Print history

The software can also take screenshots of your employees’ screens, so you can see exactly what they are looking at on their devices. In other words, the software works like a digital surveillance camera that is pointed directly at your employees’ devices.

You can access all of the data collected by this software. But you won’t need to sift through the raw data to find the information you need. You can create custom reports or dashboards to get the information you are looking for quickly.

What Are the Benefits of Monitoring User Activity?

If you’re still on the fence, it’s important to understand the benefits of learning how to monitor user activity with this software. Some of these benefits include:

  • Improve Productivity
  • Detect Insider Threats
  • Verify Legal Compliance
  • Secure Evidence for Workplace Investigations

Improve Productivity

The use of monitoring software can drastically improve your team’s productivity for a number of reasons. First, the software helps you identify the top performers on your team so you can recognize and reward them for their work. This simple act of recognizing an employee for their hard work can keep them motivated and improve their productivity.

Analyzing the data can also help you identify business processes or tasks that are taking up too much of your team’s time. Finding a way to make these processes or tasks more efficient will lead to a significant improvement in your team’s productivity.

Rely on the data to determine how to delegate work, too. If one employee is far more efficient at a certain task than others, delegate this task to them to ensure it is done as quickly as possible.

Smart business decisions like these will improve your entire team’s productivity.

How to Monitor User Activity

Detect Insider Threats

Insider threats are employees, partners, contractors, or other individuals within the organization that either wish to harm the company or who harm the company as a result of negligence or carelessness.

It’s estimated that up to 60% of all data breaches are caused by insiders, which is why it’s so important to use software to detect these threats before they cause serious damage.

This software is designed to look for any type of suspicious activity. If suspicious activity is detected, the software will immediately notify you. At this point, you will be able to review screenshots of the suspicious activity to determine if it is a legitimate insider threat.

This software gives you the opportunity to be proactive when it comes to insider threats so you won’t have to sit back and wait until a breach occurs to protect your company.

Verify Legal Compliance

Many companies must comply with federal laws and regulations such as HIPAA, PCI DSS, and FACTA. Failing to comply with these laws can lead to substantial fines in addition to other penalties. To avoid these penalties, use this software to confirm that your employees are complying with all laws and regulations.

You can also use this software to ensure that employees are complying with internal policies. For example, many companies establish internal policies that prohibit employees from visiting certain websites on company-owned devices. If your company has established this type of policy, use the software to verify that employees are complying with this rule.

Secure Evidence for Workplace Investigations

Use the data collected by this software as evidence in workplace investigations of harassment, discrimination, fraud, or other misconduct. Screenshots, emails, instant messages, and other data can serve as irrefutable evidence in these investigations. You won’t have to decide who is telling the truth in a “he said, she said” case. Instead, you can analyze this data to understand what happened and who is in the wrong.

You can either use this data as evidence for internal investigations or turn it over to the authorities to assist their criminal investigations, depending on the nature of the misconduct.

How to Monitor User Activity

What Are the Best Practices For Monitoring User Activity?

Make the most out of using software to monitor your employees’ digital activities by following these best practices:

  • Be transparent with your employees. It is possible to install and run this software without your employees’ knowledge. However, some states have laws that require employers to notify their employees whenever they are being monitored. Even if you are not in a state that has these laws, it’s best to tell your employees to establish trust. This gives your employees the opportunity to ask you questions and voice their concerns.
  • Review the data. Make an effort to dig into the wealth of data that this software collects. Schedule time to review the data on a weekly or monthly basis. Take this time to analyze the data to look for opportunities to improve your team and grow your business.
  • Choose what you want to monitor. You can control which employees and what activities you monitor. Take advantage of this feature so you don’t overstep your boundaries by tracking employees or activities you don’t actually need or want to track.
  • Provide feedback. Schedule one-on-one meetings with each of your employees to provide them with feedback regarding their performance. Use data collected by the software to support your feedback. For example, if the software reveals that one employee has far more “idle time” than everyone else on the team, talk to them about staying focused and improving their productivity.
  • Take action quickly. Never take a notification of suspicious activity lightly. If the software notifies you of this activity, it’s best to look into it immediately to determine if further action is warranted. The sooner you react, the less likely it is that the issue will turn into a major security breach.

Follow these best practices to ensure you can maximize the value of using software to monitor your employees’ digital activities.

How to Monitor User Activity With Veriato 

Veriato software is the best tool to use to monitor your employees’ digital activities. This software can track every digital move your employees make, regardless of whether they are working in the office or remotely. You will never have to wonder what your employees are doing during work hours again.

Learn more about Veriato and how it can benefit your business by starting a free trial, scheduling an online demo, or taking an online test drive today.

Insider Risk – How Prepared Are You?

Not every company is equally prepared to deal with insider risk. This report outlines the four stages of insider risk maturity and explores how to improve your insider risk preparedness.

About the author

Veriato Team
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