Essay on Issues Facing the IT Manager or Security Professional
Number of words: 1025
In recent years, there has been an increase in the use of data analysis in the workplace. Due to the internet, organizations can now collect, store and disseminate their data efficiently. Currently, managers and IT professionals can track the emails of their staff, their use of internet in the workplace among other activities. The activities mentioned above can be thought as what is expected of the management (controlling people). However, some of the processes of data collection and dissemination have been considered as infringing individuals’ privacy. Besides, they have also been seen as bypassing individuals’ security. The different views show the relativity and subjectivity of the matter.It constitutes what is often referred to as ethical dilemma in the workplace.
Due to the advent of the internet, age corporations are now collecting vast amounts of data measured in petabytes. In ordinary cases corporation collect data for business reasons. For instance, corporations collect data to expand their business operations, evaluate employee performance, minimize wastage and gain entry to a particular market. Herein lays the ethical dilemma. One would want to know whether an organization ability to collect information that would boost its operations be limited when it infringes individuals privacy (Kavathatzopoulos,2017). Again, one would also want to know whether there should limit on how the organizations use the data collected. For instance, an organization may use the data collected in other profitable opportunities. It is clear in the above examples there are conflicts of interest. One of the recent developments in the workplace has been the ability of the managers to track what their employees are doing. It is possible for managers to track their employee’s communication. It may be thought of as an innocent gesture by the managers to control the operations of their employees in the workplace, in some way it is seen as infringing one’s privacy. Many employees would be indignant at the idea of knowing their messages are being read and in some cases shared with other parties!
The issue of ownership of information during this digital age is inextricably intertwined in most organizations. In most organizations in the United States, workers are usually required to sign Non-Disclosure Agreements (NDAs). This restricts the ability of an individual to share the knowledge he/ she had previously gained in a particular environment with other future employees(Andersen & Presthus 2017). In some instances, former employees are prohibited from working in the same industry. It is evident it is practically impossible to detach the information and knowledge one might have gained while working in a particular organization. The moral question then is if it is okay for a former employee (manager or IT professional) to use the knowledge he/she had gained from a previous employer in a new employer workplace. The worker may be motivated by the inherent desire to ensure the new employer organization meets its targets and objectives. Does the use of this information contravene ownership rules in the case where for example there are trade secrets that give one employer a competitive advantage over others? There has been a surge in the number of patent rights and regulations, however; they do not adequately address the subject because of variations in country rules and laws.
The work of any manager is to control and direct employees in an organization towards achieving the organizational goals and objectives. In the case of the process of controlling other employees, a manager may have access to what the employees are sharing in the organization communication networks. In some instances, employees are made aware that their activities are being observed by another person in the network. One would then want to question the moral reason for accessing one’s personal information in the process of controlling workers. There has also been a recent move in the corporate world where employers check the credit status of their potential employees before they hire them. It can be argued one’s past credit status has no influence whatsoever on his/her ability to perform tasks assigned to him.
In the past, what mattered in any production process was the output. Unintentional errors to some extent were allowed. However, in the digital age, greater emphasis has been placed on the accuracy of the whole process. It is assumed that due to the technological developments there should be minimal errors. In an information network of an organization, a small mistake can be magnified in the system. The issue then is should managers hold employees accountable for unexpected errors in the workplace. Should there be a limit on accuracy? This issue has many organizations thinking and strategizing.
The same systems that store data can be compromised. In the last decade, there have been numerous cases where people have had their bank accounts hacked because of their personal information being accessed from organization websites. Many managers and IT professionals inevitably are required to collect personal information from their workers. The question then is should they be held liable if hackers use this information to harm their employees(Sargolzaei & Nikbakht,2017). The manager may be innocent, but it is the ultimate responsibility of organization management to ensure the safety of information from their workers.
In conclusions with technology continuously developing, then it is inevitable that many ethical issues will arise which managers will be required to deal with. As earlier mentioned the issue of ethics has much relativism and subjectivity. This means what might have been considered ethical now may not be the case and as such, repeated evaluations ought to be done in the workplace.
Kavathatzopoulos, I. (2017). Ethical leadership in business: The significance of Information and Communication Technology. In Keynote speech at Japan Society for Information and Management 75th Annual Conference (pp. 1-4). Japan Society for Information and Management.
Presthus, W., & Andersen, L. (2017). INFORMATION PRIVACY FROM A RETAIL MANAGEMENT PERSPECTIVE.
Sargolzaei, E., & Nikbakht, M. (2017). The Ethical and Social Issues of Information Technology: A Case Study. INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF ADVANCED COMPUTER SCIENCE AND APPLICATIONS, 8(10), 138-146.