Using the firm’s monitoring software, it was revealed that a Canadian accountant was conducting private activities while she was supposed to be working, and was consequently ordered to compensate back her employer for “time theft.”
The judge’s decision represented one of the first occasions that contained certain technology which has been implemented to demand an individual to compensate an employer for weak performance on the job.
Karlee Besse, a worker for the accounting company Reach CPA on Vancouver Island, first stated that she had been terminated improperly and that her employer was obligated to pay her $5,000 in back pay and severance money.
Besse’s company stated that it dismissed her for time theft and lodged a counterclaim for just over $2,600 in earnings it gave her while she was reportedly not working in addition to a portion of an advance she claimed to have received prior to the beginning of her job.
The judge’s order came after more and more monitoring software is installed on employees’ pcs to monitor keystrokes and mouse activities to ensure employees remain focused on work-related activities while working from home. Several critics believe that this type of monitoring breaches the essential rights of staff and is eavesdropping.
Many organisations have raised their concerns over this matter. Recently in October, last year, the National Labor Relations Board came out in the public to state its concern over the software installed on the employee’s pcs that intrude on their privacy and rights.
General Counsel Jennifer Abruzzo of NLRB expressed her motive to “protect employees, to the greatest extent possible, from intrusive or abusive electronic monitoring and automated management practices that would have a tendency to interfere with Section 7 rights.”
Section 7 states that the employees have the right to protect certain activities from their employer.
What happened to Karlee Besse?
The employee was found arranging meetings with her manager for private purposes which was caught in the software called ‘TimeCamp’ on her laptop used for work.
Later the company found out that Karlee Besse was behind schedule on her work. The company also notice the time difference as between 22 Feb and 15 March, she logged into nearly 51 hours which doesn’t appear to be the time that must be spent on any work.
The first digital court in Canada, the Civil Resolution Tribunal, found that she had stolen time, thanks to screen-capture videos made by TimeCamp. The software differentiates time between work and non-work tasks, such as watching television, while the clips reveal which files a user accesses and how long users engage with them. Such actions were considered “personal” as opposed to “work activity.”
Besse stated that she had printed the required paperwork and was using the physical copies, although she never informed Reach of anything. Her employer stated that due to her restricted printing abilities, she was unable to print the amount of required documentation for her job.
However, the court rejected her claim and directed that she repay $1,506.34 back to Reach based on her earnings.
How does the software work?
The firm revealed that it used TimeCamp on every employee’s computer they provide the company to monitor their activity, a type of employee behaviour monitoring software, which had been set it up on Besse’s work laptop. The assigned documents to her had gone beyond budget and are still behind time, according to the program.
The application can monitor how long a file is open as well as the way an individual utilises it and tracks their time using it. Inconsistencies in Besse’s timecards and the software activity records were found by the firm.