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Monitoring Employee Productivity in Law Firms – A Balanced Approach

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Monitoring Employee Productivity in Law Firms

Although we wish for each employee to contribute fully every day and drive our firm's progress, this ideal is not always achieved. Solid Key Performance Indicators, clear expectations, and strict accountability are essential to provide employees the guidance and direction necessary for success. Monitoring employee productivity in law firms is crucial not only for assessing performance but also for security reasons. Data breaches are a significant concern, and it's vital to recognize that many cybersecurity risks stem from employee behavior, often unintentional. Implementing strict protocols to log and control access to sensitive data is crucial for tracking potential issues and protecting against threats.

Should You Invest in Employee Monitoring?

This question doesn't have a universal answer. Different organizations thrive with various monitoring systems. In larger companies, creating a data environment that assigns access based on specific employee data needs can be highly advantageous. This approach is subtle yet effective, logging every access and modification to documents, which precisely aids in defining responsibilities.

For smaller businesses, a variety of software solutions are available specifically designed to monitor employee activities. Some programs capture screenshots or even use webcams to take photos, which employees might find intrusive. It's wise for companies to internally discuss these monitoring tools to gauge how staff members perceive them. It’s important to avoid escalating employee turnover while trying to boost productivity. A content workforce is generally more diligent and effective, highlighting the need for balance in these decisions.

Despite these considerations, there are several unobtrusive and effective options for monitoring employee productivity in law firms, which can enhance both productivity and cybersecurity.

Types of Employee Monitoring

Several of the software and tools already in use at your company provide a degree of oversight. If an employee is listed in your company’s database, you can track their identity and the information they access. There are also numerous tools available for this purpose.

We will explore a few of these options here.

  1. Microsoft Teams: Microsoft Teams serves as an outstanding organizational resource. Although it wasn't originally designed for monitoring activities, its features can be adapted for this purpose. Utilizing Microsoft usage reports and team reports within Teams can provide a clear overview of productivity and usage patterns.
  2. Monitoring Software: A wide range of monitoring software exists, including Teramind, which is used not only by employers but also in educational settings. As schools and universities transitioned online during the pandemic, many required students to use monitoring software as well. These applications vary slightly in their functionalities but are typically installed directly on devices to record data. This data collection may involve tracking open tabs, viewed pages, keystrokes, and even activating cameras for video and still images. Additionally, many of these programs offer the capability to capture and retrieve screenshots.
  3. Phone Monitoring: Phone monitoring can be a valuable tool as it enables the collection and utilization of data that might otherwise be overlooked if not recorded by the employee in customer files. Additionally, many VoIP systems offer comprehensive reporting features that facilitate the gathering of data via this mode of communication.
  4. Microsoft 365 Reporting:There are many reports that could be helpful for the employee and employer including:
  • Email Activity by User
  • Contacts Activity
  • Calendar Log Events and many others


While certain software exists to precisely measure a user's productivity, many of the tools you currently employ also include features to help with this assessment. Tracking the number of calls, hours of productive work, and maintaining scorecards are straightforward tasks that can be managed with the tools you already have.

Considering a more extensive employee monitoring system is an option. However, it's crucial to evaluate the potential effects on company culture before proceeding. We advise prioritizing clear expectations and accountability over the deployment of such software. As an IT provider, we want to ensure you are informed about these capabilities, which should be managed by a competent technical team.

If you have any inquiries about utilizing your IT systems for employee productivity monitoring, please reach out. We're here to assist!

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