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Monitoring should not all be about ‘Big Brother’ – some new types of keylogger employee management systems are being developed to help to reduce stress and improve the health of employees. This should be a positive development, as it may increase productivity in the long run. However, many countries have not evolved in this way yet. This is the case in Belarus, Cyprus, Denmark, Estonia, Greece, Japan, Latvia, Mexico, Panama, Peru, Romania, Serbia, Singapore, Switzerland, Turkey, and – interestingly – also in the US. But it is the opposite in Italy, where new tech is increasingly used to organize work – and this is generally acceptable as long as employers comply with a specific tech and monitoring reform made in 2015, plus the GDPR. In some countries, although these types of technology may be new, the concept of employers being responsible for providing a healthy working environment is enshrined in health & safety law and is therefore already an obligation.


Use the remote employee management system to create workflows that boost productivity and streamline efficiency to

  • Track idle time and send automated notifications to remote workers if they are idling excessively
  • Build an accurate estimate of which type of work takes how much time with payroll reports & activity breakdowns
  • Identify process gaps and redundant or tedious steps in workflows that eat up too much employee time
  • Set rules and policies that will help reduce office waste, like printing limits to lower ink and paper waste

This is an interesting twist, as it is effectively the reverse of the prohibitive stance of data protection law: employers are required to monitor in some circumstances and the focus is on how to use technology to do this more effectively. This is the case in Argentina, Colombia, Cyprus, Germany, Greece, Romania and Turkey. In Bulgaria and Sweden, workers in potentially dangerous working conditions are monitored for health and safety reasons, though in more run-of-the-mill working environments this would be unlawful.


In a number of countries, drug and alcohol testing is routinely done as part of ensuring a safe environment for all workers. In various countries, people with certain jobs, such as pilots, are routinely health-checked. Other employees are closely monitored under the keylogger employee management system to ensure they don’t go over the maximum time they can lawfully work and that they take their breaks. Recently, however, a company in Germany implemented a system that generates data about how time is spent to help management distribute work more evenly. But as this could also be used as a performance-monitoring tool, the Court ordered it to be switched off.

In New Zealand, the legal requirement for a healthy work experience often leads to monitoring and some larger companies invest in general health monitoring. But the key here is to obtain employee consent. In Belgium, monitoring, say, heart rates and blood pressure, would likely be prohibited, as too intrusive. The key, again, could be consent, although it may not be valid unless there are clear advantages for the employee. But in some countries, the best way of enabling health monitoring is by the employer keeping well away. In France, occupational health services do regular medical checks on employees, but those services also handle all sensitive health information, keeping it at once removed from the employer. The position in Finland is analogous, as employers may offer employees the means to measure health data, but because employers can only process what is strictly necessary for the employment relationship, the employer has no right to process the data generated.

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