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"By using people analytics you don't have to rely on gut
feeling anymore," the article writes. "Analytics enables HR
professionals to make data-driven decisions. Furthermore,
analytics helps to test the effectiveness of HR policies and
different interventions."
Despite these advantages, Godshalk is wary that shrinking
or removing the human element may bring its own novel
setbacks. She fears that processes of hiring, for instance,
might unfairly target and even weed out potentially strong
job candidates.
"People may be discriminated against," Godshalk says.
"They may have weird gaps in employment, they may not be
chosen because certain key words were not represented on
their resume, and yet they still might be a very good employee." These are the factors that computer algorithms cannot
currently comprehend or consider.
With data collection on people increasing, it's natural that
relationships with their employers will change Anandarajan says one of the adjustments people will have to make is
in their level of trust in the people for whom they work. He
presents the new dynamic as a triangle, in which employees, employers and the hackers after the data of both stand
as the three points.
In his analogy, companies are guardians, employees are
victims and criminals are, well, the criminals who hungrily
chase the data trails of their prey. "Criminals are usually
more advanced in the way they capture information," Anandarajan says, "so there has to be a closer relationship, a
better understanding between the guardian and the victim
as well."
With how this relationship has evolved, it's important for
the guardians and victims to know why their data is being
breached and the value it holds to unsavoury elements.
"There has to be an understanding of the types of crimes,
the types of things you can do with the data," Anandarajan
says. That way the guardians can adjust their defence and
justify policies meant to protect the employees. Without a
pool of knowledge shared between the two, the relationship
can quickly turn bitter and mistrustful.


"There can become an employer/employee breakdown,
where the employees are not trustful of an employer," Godshalk says.

"Employees really need to understand
what data is being gathered, [and]
how that's important to them and
their performance. They might need
to give consent as to whether or not
certain pieces of data are gathered and
shared," she adds.
Usually, there is a limit to the amount and type of information a company can gather. Kimberly O'Connor, a professor
in the Department of Organizational Leadership at Purdue
University, Ind., is another contributor to The Internet of
People, Things and Services. She says that the law protects
both employees and consumers against having their data
mined, but only on a general level. "That area of the law is
constantly evolving as technology is evolving. Oftentimes
the law is playing catchup," O'Connor says.
Rules and regulations still have a far way to go, and because
of the growth rate of technology, that distance is more likely
to stretch than shrink. Also, the balance tends to skew more
to the organization than to the person working there.
"Oftentimes the measure of privacy that the law does recognize ends up getting outweighed by the employer's right
to protect the workplace, or to protect everyday business
operations," O'Connor says. As devices become more accurate at evaluating employee behaviour, that favourable
treatment could allow businesses to glean even physiological information.
"In the company of the future," Anandarajan says, "your Internet behaviour, your Fitbit, how long you spend in the gym,
all this information is being captured."
Companies have already introduced fitness monitoring into
their health and wellness programs. A 2015 article by the
Guardian points to BP America's purchase and dissemina-


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