This report is part of a series of employee monitoring and productivity software comparisons designed for the business owner, compliance officer or HR Manager who is looking for software systems to deal with Insider Threats and measure employee productivity. The questions our audience are asking include:
- How can I easily monitor my employee’s phones and computers without needing technical help?
- How can I prevent sensitive data company data leaving the office?
- How can I see which employees are productive and which aren’t?
- How can I measure employee attendance and absences?
- How can I do this without a huge investment in hardware and training
It is written by KnowIT technical staff from the perspective of Digital Endpoint.
Teramind cannot be considered a true employee monitoring product the same way that KnowIT can. This is for several reasons. First, they do not offer true attendance or productivity monitoring. Instead it is focused on time worked and project plans. That means it is more suitable for project managers or accountants. Second, Teramind won’t monitor certain employees if they forget to log in to the application so it is not always monitoring employees all the time.
When it comes to employee monitoring, productivity and attendance are the two key areas that an application must focus on for employers to consider using it to monitor their employees.
Below you can see the feature comparison between Teramind and KnowIT.
KnowIT is the industry leader in employee monitoring software for both computers and mobile devices and it focuses specifically on productivity and attendance monitoring as its core features.
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From the table above we can see that Teramind and KnowIT both offer a wide range of monitoring features, but KnowIT offers key employee monitoring features that Teramind lacks.
Teramind also does not have the same exclusive features either. For example, with Teramind, if an employee removes or installs software from their device then the change is not captured. That means that only the installed applications when you first install Teramind are shown.
Obviously this is not useful for a manager because you need to know if they remove software or install software that may be against company policy.
KnowIT solves this problem with its exclusive Global Application Discovery feature. This feature ensures that KnowIT makes sure that the installed applications list on your employee’s devices are always up to date – no matte what they install or uninstall – so you can always see if they are following your corporate IT policy by not using prohibited applications.
Measuring employee productivity in a realistic manner is needed for managers to better understand how their workforce is performing. Both KnowIT and Teramind advertise and have several features for monitoring productivity, they just define and measure productivity differently.
Teramind defines productivity as the time that the user is productive whilst using the machine, i.e. using the keyboard and mouse. This time is then used, along with whatever applications or applications have been set as productive or unproductive from within the online portal to show how productive or unproductive the employee is given.
But this does have flaws.
First, because Teramind is set up more like a project management or accounting tool, the productivity measurements only work realistically if managers take the time to include projects and tasks and employee salaries and so on.
Second. managers really have no choice but to dig into the captured data and decide for themselves what is productive and what is unproductive because Teramind doesn’t give any sort of normalized reporting for employee productivity.
KnowIT solves this problem by generating a normalized productivity rating for each employee instead.
This is a percentage score, based upon the employee attendance for that day, along with how long they spend in applications that are set as productive or unproductive from the KnowIT portal throughout the day.
The higher the productivity score the more productive the employee is, based upon what the company itself deems as being productive or unproductive application usage.
These scores can be compared across departments or individual employees to give you a greater insight in to the productivity habits of your employees compared to Teramind.
Apart from productivity monitoring, and knowing what employees do at work, employers also need to know if employees are at work.
To do this they need to monitor employee attendance.
Out of the two products, only KnowIT really monitors employee attendance.
Teramind doesn’t offer any attendance monitoring, apart from telling you if the user is online or if they are idle and not using the machine, so it is not suitable for companies that want to truly monitor employee attendance.
With KnowIT you can see when employees log on, log off, arrive late or leave early. Logon tracking is available for computers as well as fingerprint scanner.
KnowIT takes all the employee attendance information and uses it to provide a normalized attendance score for all employees.
This overall percentage score can be compared between employees or departments so managers can easily see which employees are not coming to work and act.
Providing reporting that can be easily understood by employers and can answer key business questions is an important part of all employee monitoring software.
Teramind does not offer any real comprehensive reporting functionality.
Managers must search for the monitoring data of interest within the Teramind portal and then they can download it as PDF or an Excel spreadsheet and manually email it to the required person.
This is not a good way to present key employee monitoring information to managers. It cannot be used to answer any business questions a manager might have without having to search through the data itself first to find the answer.
KnowIT instead gives managers a categorized list of key reports that can be used to answer key business questions that managers may have. This may range from which employees are always late to who is using the most network bandwidth during the day.
These reports can be emailed separately to employees or other managers and KnowIT can also automatically send emails to both the employee or any other recipient you choose so you can easily monitor productivity for certain employees or all employees as well as productivity and attendance.
KnowIT also allows you to send email reports whenever any employee triggers a KnowIT alert so you know, for example, who is using prohibited applications the moment it happens.
And because these reports can be sent to employees it encourages self-policing amongst employees for both productivity and attendance which can help serve as a deterrent against unauthorized behavior.
There are several key features that an employee monitoring software package must have to monitor employees effectively. Because monitoring attendance and productivity is not always enough, features such as monitoring key logs or taking screenshots are a must for any manager.
Screenshot taking is offered by both Teramind and KnowIT. They both take scheduled screenshots and upload them to the online portal so you can see what they are doing whilst at work.
But, we have already mentioned that due to the way that Teramind measures productivity.
You really must dive in to the data to find insights or events of interest. That means sifting through hundreds of screenshots to find what you are looking for.
This isn’t a productive use of a managers time.
That’s why, on top of scheduled screenshots, KnowIT has a key difference which is on-demand screenshots.
This is exactly what you think it is. With this feature, you can take screenshots at any time you require, just by clicking a button.
There’s no need to wait for a screenshot from a timer or sift through tons of data because with this feature you can take screenshots exactly when you need to. This means with KnowIT you get the data you want exactly when you need it.
That means that you don’t miss any vital screenshots the same way that you might if only screenshot capturing on a timer was offered.
So immediately, Teramind is at a disadvantage because it does not have this feature.
And because manager’s may not always have time to log in to the portal all the time they need a robust alerts system that allows them to be notified immediately when anything of interest happens.
Both Teramind and KnowIT have an alerts system, they are just designed differently.
All the alerts for Teramind are inside the online portal only and cannot be emailed.
This means you must always be logged in to the online portal to see if an alert has been triggered. When alert is triggered you can choose whether to warn, block or lock out the user from the application. But this is still inside the portal, and the same applies to creating alerts.
KnowIT has a better alert system.
Alerts are still created inside the portal but, when they are triggered you can specify that they are emailed to a person of your choice.
This means that managers don’t need to be logged in to the online portal all the time to receive alerts. They simply wait for an alert to be triggered inside KnowIT to get the notification email and then they can act, if required.
Any alert email notifications can be scheduled and this can be immediately or a daily summary. Managers can also receive a daily summary for whenever new or prohibited applications or websites are used or installed as well.
The daily summary feature is especially useful. It allows you to get just a daily glance of what is happening in your workplace, instead of having to be logged in constantly searching through data to find something of interest, the way that you must with Teramind.
Both products are similar but both are different in key areas that matter for companies.
Teramind may be better suited to a small business, with only a few users, because of the limited attendance tracking and reporting.
Companies with many employees may find themselves quickly swamped with too much data that they then need to dig into to find events of interest if they choose to use Teramind.
KnowIT is more tailored to larger companies. With its reporting suite and focus on attendance, KnowIT can easily help large companies keep track of their employees. Along with productivity monitoring, as well as support for tracking employee mobile devices, KnowIT is the better option.
Teramind may seem cheaper at $15 per user per month, compared to $19.99 per month per user for KnowIT, but by paying extra and choosing KnowIT you really are getting the most powerful employee monitoring software.