Wearable device survey finds staff resistant to workplace surveillance

By Madhumita Murgia

Only 46 per cent people said they would accept a free piece of wearable technology if their employers had access to the data recorded. Photo / Bloomberg
Only 46 per cent people said they would accept a free piece of wearable technology if their employers had access to the data recorded. Photo / Bloomberg

Despite 3 million Britons buying a wearable device in 2015, many are not willing to use them at work, according to new research from PwC.

In a survey of 2000 workers across the UK, only 46 per cent said they would accept a free piece of wearable technology if their employers had access to the data recorded.

This was despite the fact that two-thirds of respondents wanted their employer to take an active role in their health and wellbeing. ..

The biggest barrier to adoption was trust, with 40 per cent saying they don't trust their employer to use it for their benefit, and in fact believe it will actively be used against them.

"Employers haven't been able to overcome the 'big brother' reaction from people to sharing their personal data," said Anthony Bruce, people analytics leader at PwC.

"If [they] want to overcome the trust gap they need to show that they are serious about data security and communicate openly with their staff about the benefits for them."

Compared to a similar PwC survey last June, the proportion of workers willing to make the tradeoff is almost exactly the same at 44 per cent, which shows employers have made no further inroads into gaining worker trust.

- Daily Telegraph UK

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