Big Brother in the workplace
Although there doesn't seem to be anything intrinsically wrong with the software described in this Business Week article, I shudder to think how some of the bosses I have known would have used its capabilities.
Worklenz is software designed to help companies manage large projects and maximize efficiency. But unlike an enterprise resource program, which tracks a company's inventory, invoices, and assets, Worklenz tracks workers -- what they do, when they do it, and how long it takes....
In its essence, Worklenz uses an extreme form of micromanagement to help a company make broad decisions. The program can sync with each employee's Microsoft Outlook e-mail account, Microsoft Project scheduling software, and his or her PeopleSoft timesheet, to let a boss see everyone's schedules, what tasks they're working on, and how soon each employee will complete his or her work.
I am reminded of the application software development manager at Burroughs many years ago who measured his employees by how many lines of code they turned it: if I recall correctly, employees were churning out several hundred lines of code per day. I gather they put more energy into figuring out how to inflate the lines-of-code number than they did into actually programming applications.
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