Wearables in the Workplace – The Good and the Bad
Wearable technology is catching on, as new applications rise to meet the ever-expanding assortment of device options hitting the market.
Corporate managers show a growing acceptance of wearables in the workplace, according to some research from IT staffing firm Robert Half Technology.
Of the chief information officers surveyed by RHT, a full 81% said that wearables will happen in the workplace, with 37% saying they will happen within the next three to five years.
Many workers will welcome the opportunity to adapt leading-edge technology to their own personal sense of style. However, some other workers may find that there is a dark side to the potential of wearable technology.
Case in point: some warehouse workers in Ireland, (working for UK supermarket chain Tesco), are now issued with connected armbands containing 2.8-inch displays. While the devices help the workers to manage their jobs, they also give management the ability to track their movements.
This can be a helpful capability in a fast-paced logistics operation – but do we really want our bosses to be able to track us continuously using a device we wear on our bodies?
The ubiquity of mobile phones gave rise to the 24/7/365 work culture, in which everyone is expected to be reachable at all times. We’ve more or less gotten used to this. But will we feel as accepting of a world in which we may be tracked by our employers – on the job or off?
It may seem far-fetched today, but you never know…
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