How Dare Companies Trust Their Employees!
from the what-gall! dept
A new study in the UK has come out saying that, while more companies are providing internet access to employees, a smaller percentage are using filtering technology to block out “inappropriate” sites. The article makes this out to be a terrible thing – suggesting companies don’t understand the risk. While perhaps that’s true in some cases, there are other sides to this story – and one of them could be that some employers actually trust their employees to do the right thing and not to surf “inappropriate sites.” The article even gets a quote from someone at Websense, who is clearly biased as the company is trying to sell more web filters saying that companies that provide “unrestricted access” are creating “distractions” for employees and that: “Every company with internet access has a responsibility to ensure it is managed in order to protect both their shareholder value and their employees.” Well, first off, plenty of studies have shown that actually trusting your employees to do the right thing tends to make them more productive, and if you can’t hire employees who know how to avoid “distractions” then you have an HR problem, not an internet access problem. There are also studies that show that occasional personal surfing at work tends to make people more productive as well. Besides, they might have a stronger argument if their filters worked better – but considering that plenty of perfectly legitimate sites get blocked, there are cases where filters can make workers decidedly less productive when they can’t reach sites they need to access.