Canadian accountant ordered to pay employer back for ‘time theft’: NPR

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The TimeCamp time tracking software can monitor which files are accessed, and for how long, and if other idle functions, such as streaming services, are used on a laptop.

Elise Amendola/AP


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Elise Amendola/AP

The TimeCamp time tracking software can monitor which files are accessed, and for how long, and if other idle functions, such as streaming services, are used on a laptop.

Elise Amendola/AP

When Canadian accountant Karlee Besse is fired for being unproductive at her job, she finds herself up against not only her former employer, but the tracking software she has time too.

Now, a civil tribunal, which is part of the Canadian judicial system, has ruled that Besse owes the former company $2,756 after the software was installed on her laptop revealed that she had misrepresented him more than 50 times at work.

Besse worked remotely for Reach CPA, an accounting firm based in British Columbia, Canada. The controversy started last year when Besse said he was fired without “just cause”.

Her employer argued that Besse was let go because she was involved in time theft. Reach CPA said they gathered evidence using TimeCamp, a time tracking software that records which files are accessed, and for how long. The records showed that there was a difference of 50 hours between what Besse said was how the time worked and what TimeCamp recorded as a work activity.

Besse argued that she found it difficult to use the program and could not get the software to differentiate between work and the time she spent on her work laptop for personal use. – which, with both parties agreeing, has been approved by her employer during staff off hours.

In a video submitted to the court, Reach CPA demonstrated that TimeCamp is able to record when and for how long employees have access to work-related documents, and differentiation – based on track electronic – from when they are on inactive sites, such as streaming. service like Disney Plus. The company makes the final distinction between work and non-work activities.

Besse also argued that she spent a lot of time working with paper documents, but didn’t tell her company because “they wouldn’t want to hear that.” However, TimeCamp also monitors printing activity and the company found no evidence that it printed a large number of documents.

When confronted with the 50 unaccounted hours, Beese told her manager that she entered some hours in her timesheet incorrectly.

“I have sent time to files that I did not speak and that were not correct or appropriate in any way or fashion, and I recognize that and so for that I am very sorry,” said Besse in a meeting with her .company, according to a video cited in the decision.

Ultimately, the Civil Resolution Tribunal dismissed Besse’s claims. The court also ruled that Besse has 30 days to reimburse her former employer for the unaccounted hours of work she paid for him and other related expenses.

An increasing number of companies are using technologies to monitor their employees while they are working from home. Employers see it as a tool to ensure employees are not procrastinating and improve efficiency. Workers and privacy advocates, however, say this type of tracking is intrusive and worry that it will normalize workplace surveillance, even when people return to the office.

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