WHAT IS GEO FENCING?
Consider a tech that allows you to quietly integrate with your HR, People, Material Management needs, without interfering with employee’s day to day working. Non-interfering, whereas still being guided by corporate business rules (ethical), Geo Fencing is one such solution that could be used for the betterment of workforce time management. It needs to be noted that technology, be it interfering or non-interfering, used for the degenerative purposes can cause more problems than do good. Therefore, such sensitive technology which could be used by anyone for any purpose, needs to be controlled and used judiciously. Benefits of such use are in large no’s.
Gartner defines geofencing as “Creating a virtual boundary in which a device, individual or asset can be tracked and monitored or detected if the boundary is violated. Examples are the tracking of pets, children and Alzheimer’s patients, criminals sentenced to home detention, trucks and high-value cargos.” Now off course, non of the above cases involve corporate work, which we intend to discuss in this article.
WHO USES THE TECHNOLOGY?
While, there are large number of use cases for Geo-Fencing including vehicle movement within Manufacturing units, Material movement, Labor movement and tracking; however in this article, we will discuss Geo Fencing with respect to People and Work only.
What’s important for tracking is to identify a constructive objective rather for a regressive purpose. Once such an objective is written, its important that data collected from source is used judiciously, which implies use of ACL for data access. While, we should deliberate on the use of such restrictive methods in the work culture, here are some examples on how it can immensely benefit the workforce.
CONSIDER A TEST CASE- GEO FENCING IN HOSPITALS.
Let’s look at a Healthcare (Hospitals) case: Doctor’s and especially Sr. Doctors make many visits during the course of a day, from one hospital to another. For a system of record perspective, the doctor’s in time and out time needs to be recorded, so that salaries or consulting fees are paid with reference time data. However, the question revolves around the larger objective- What is the overall purpose of Geo Fencing in a Hospital? Consultative business requires assessment of time and effort viz a viz expectations for the engagement. There are qualitative mechanisms and there are quantitative measures.
Movement tracking is a quantitative measure, that can suggest amount of time spent working for the Organization, while also providing inputs on time spent in certain key work locations. Further analysis can be involved such as- ‘Why was time spent on ‘X’ location?’ and the answer could be more operations, more customers, more meetings etc. To another question ‘Around what time have visits peaked?’ it could be Morning, Afternoon or Evening. Inputs of the kind could trigger answers such as: a) Rerouting the Doctor’s visits or suggest daily plans based on Inputs and Algorithms configuring routes for the benefit of time management for the doctor, b) Analyzing the output of the visit, thus providing a Cost Benefit Analysis of the time spent in such peak locations. These and much more could be suggestive measures that could be imbibed into the system.
As can be identified from this typical industry, other more people centric organizations with multiple units, could use the service as well. Labor movement, could be tracked, off course the purpose needs to be clear, more with respect to optimizing time & effort rather than degenerative policies such as salary deduction etc. Access control of labor to certain locations could be a trigger to the problem.
It also needs to be understood, that introduction of such sensitive technology should always require participation of various bodies in an organization, including management, labor unions and off course the Human Resource team.
For Workrig, an HCM solutions sister concern we are building solutions for the betterment of the Workforce and the Organization, by collecting data from various sources, not to provide just a tracking solution but to figure out a way to improve work performance and ensure a happier workforce.