The hottest new trend is workers using technology to track everything they do. From how much work they get done, to their attention span, to how stressed they get during the day. It’s all in an effort to be more productive. 

  • For example, when it comes to time management, a growing number of workers are using software with names like Rescue Time, iDoneThis, and Simple-ology. They’re all designed to measure exactly how you use your work computer. That way, you can break down how much time you’re actually doing work, and how much time you’re wasting on You Tube. One worker we read about found that he tends to get more done right after chatting with friends online. Another employee saw that he got a lot more done when he switched tasks regularly. So he had the software remind him to change things up every 20 minutes. 

  • Workers are using online tools like Lumosity, which are designed to track our mental performance through computer games. So employees may spend 15 minutes testing their memory, attention, and problem-solving skills, and then get ways to improve in those areas.

  • Workers are also tracking themselves physically.

There’s a wristband from Jawbone which tracks sleep quantity and quality. So you can see if you get less work done on days you get less sleep. You can also track your stress levels through a monitor from Heart Math, which charts your pulse. So you can see which situations stress you out. The program also recommends ways to reduce anxiety, so you perform better under stress. 

Studies show that workers who use this new self-tracking technology tend to feel more satisfied with their jobs, so why don’t more bosses require it? Because the benefits only show up if bosses stay out of the way. Workers don’t want the boss knowing exactly how much time they spend surfing the Internet, for example, and then use that information against them. Instead, these programs work best when the employee feels in control of their own behavior.