According to new data from Kinly, a global provider of audio-visual integration and collaboration services, 44% of enterprises are collecting data on employees’ home working hours, with an additional 33% planning to in future. 

The new Trusted Connections 2024 study surveyed 425 enterprise AV professionals working in the UK, Germany, Nordics and the Netherlands. It revealed that 65% of enterprises are encouraging staff to install Internet of Things (IoT) devices in their homes, while 33% are also investing in analytics platforms to monitor remote workers.

For many enterprises, at-home tracking systems are helping meet their obligations to protect employee wellbeing — something which has become much harder since workers left the office environment. In fact, 32% of those surveyed said their organisations are now collecting wellbeing data such as ‘tiredness indicators’ from remote staff. A further 37% plan to track this sort of data in future.

More than a quarter said their organisations are also collecting environmental data from people’s homes, such as lighting and air quality, while 36% have plans to collect this data in the future.

Commenting on this trend, Tom Martin, CEO of Kinly, says, “For years enterprises have been able to maximise both the productivity and wellbeing of staff within the office environment. From providing natural lighting to monitoring screen time, worker analytics have been a big part of the AV industry. Now, that’s all changing. With so many employees working from home, businesses can no longer guarantee a high-quality work environment. The result is people working longer hours, in conditions that wouldn’t have been acceptable at the office.”

“IoT technology is becoming an increasingly popular way to address this, using at-home AV equipment to monitor everything from air quality, to working hours and screen time. Of course, adopting this tech means being transparent with employees. It cannot be used without their express consent.”

According to Kinly’s research, employee wellbeing is not the only challenge posed by the rise of hybrid working. More than half of those surveyed said poor hybrid workflows are damaging staff productivity, while 27% face issues with decentralised or siloed data. Over half said that outdated AV tech is also damaging the overall productivity of remote employees. Tom continues, “While remote worker tracking will definitely be the hot topic of 2024, there’s a lot to be said about getting the basics of AV right. Many enterprises have still not developed effective strategies for hybrid working, with efficiency and productivity slumping due to badly designed workflows and outdated tech. As our research report shows, effective hybrid working is essential to business growth, staff retention and even recruitment. Simply giving employees a laptop and saying ‘work from home’ isn’t enough. Enterprises need bespoke, intelligent and increasingly data-driven solutions for hybrid working, built around their specific business goals, and their employee’s individual needs.”

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