Should Employers Monitor Cell Phone Use At Work?

Employees are poised to be distracted at work sometimes. And unsurprisingly, the main distracting tool happens to be their cell phones. Making personal calls, texting, and responding to chats not related to work constitutes distractions. And while this inappropriate use of cell phones at work hampers productivity a great deal, it is not advisable to totally prohibit the use of cell phone at work. In fact, no matter how hard business managers try, they can’t totally disable cell phone among workers. With the appropriate use, cell phone contributes its own quarter to business productivity and that’s not disputable. Hence, business managers would rather focus on how to monitor cell phone use at work to regulate its abuse.

The proper monitoring of cell phone use at work by managers does reduce the risk of its negative consequences, however. On the contrary, when not properly monitored, it leads to cell phone abuse in the workplace. But the major challenge facing some managers in monitoring cell phone at work is to not send a message of complete restriction.

Here are effective tips on how to monitor cell phone at work -

Create a monitoring policy

Generally, policies ensure the proper running of workplaces. For managers to curtail the use of cell phones at work, phone monitoring policies have to be established. This policy will draw a bold line between business uses of the phone and personal uses of the phone. It should also give in details, the calls permitted to be made in the office, who makes the call, and the time for personal phone usage.  To make your cell phone policy valid, there is a need to create awareness of it. Hence, employers much consistently remind the employees about the policy. Also, to make it more professional, have the employees sign an agreement page that comes with the policy.

Q&A with Jane

Excessive cellphone usage is one of the most common workplace problems.

Make use of monitoring app

In understanding how to monitor cell phone use at work, one lesson is certain; it goes beyond a manual approach. This task of ensuring that cell phones are not used inappropriately during office hours is quite tasking. Hence, managers and business owners are encouraged to introduce the use of an app that monitors phone activities. It can be installed on the workplace cell phone and also on every employee’s phone. It checks for the incoming and outgoing call, text messages, email and so. With that, even in the absence of the managers, mobile phone activities can still be monitored.

Employ disciplinary actions

Disciplinary actions are part of the overall monitoring done by the business owner. For any defaulter to the monitoring policy, there should be a fair, logical and fitting discipline action taken. When disciplinary actions are taken continually, it serves as a reminder for others. In the mist of the discipline, however, rating the level of discipline based on the offense committed would be important and should be guided as stated in the provided cell phone policy. Hence, it goes down to creating an effective employee cell phone policy.

Conclusion

The most important step on how to monitor cell phone use at work is to create an effective policy that will cut down its abuse. Monitoring will not really be important if there is no abuse of cell phone use in the workplace. Managers can start by ensuring a full implementation of the policy first before monitoring the employees if the policy records high violations.

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