Sensor Badges Analyze Your Happiness at Work (VIDEO)

[ 0 ] November 7, 2012 |

Using data to understand how companies work is a growing trend in the business world, says Ben Waber, president and CEO of Sociometric Solutions. Waber’s team has developed a technology that collects data through the use of electronic sensing devices that they ask employees at major firms to wear in order to understand how workers interact with one another and how they collaborate.

Watch Ben Waber discuss how who you talk to at work influences happiness and effectiveness:

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The sensor badges designed by Sociometric Solutions are capable of capturing face-to-face interactions, extracting social signals from speech and body movement, and measuring proximity and location of users.

“We can look at not only where people are, but who is talking to who, how people talk to each other,” Waber says. “By looking at these patterns of collaboration and communication we can really understand what are the driving factors behind employee happiness, behind productivity.”

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Smart phone apps are a simpler version of the sensor technology that Waber’s team expanded upon. “They (smart phone apps) are helping you understand how your behavior is affecting you,” he says.

It’s a short leap to find uses for the more sophisticated sensor technology beyond the workplace, he adds.

Some examples include looking at “how are families interacting with each other, how people learn better at school,” he says.

But there are privacy issues. Researchers need to figure out “how can you analyze and control this data in a way so that it doesn’t feel like ‘big brother’ and so that people can’t actually spy on you,” Waber says.

 

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Category: Lifestyle, Technology, Videos

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About Ben Waber: Ben Waber is the President and CEO of Sociometric Solutions, a management consulting firm based off of his research. His new book Social Sense, published by Pearson, will be released early 2013. In his academic [...]
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