The Digital You at Work: What to Consider

Algorithms that measure influence and motivation are part of a new group of analytic tools — from pre-employment analytics to on-the-job assessments — that can help a company determine an employee’s value throughout her career.

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Algorithms that measure influence and motivation are part of a new group of analytic tools — from pre-employment analytics to on-the-job assessments — that can help a company determine an employee’s value throughout her career and the course of her “digital footprint.”

Image courtesy of Sensacell Inc.

LinkedIn. Facebook. Twitter. Email. IM. Text messages. Blogs. The list goes on.

Data driven by you, and about you, is everywhere. And it is increasingly an organizational instrument that employers — or perspective employers — ply with a bevy of data analytics tools to determine your value, influence or motivation within and outside an organization.

A recent article in Fast Company describes Influencer, a new software tool by Salesforce.com that measures an employee’s influence. It is not so much how many status updates someone posts to a corporate social site — volume can be a drawback — but more an amalgamation of posts, Likes, shares and other attributes that determine an individual’s sway.

Another company, Cataphora, uses big data to model employee behavior. Its software shows a contextual relationship between data — emails, spreadsheets, IM, phone calls, wikis, expense reports and the like. It builds a digital character for each employee that is mapped against a model of the organization’s normal behavior. The result: any deviations from normality are detected. This can produce a variety of findings, from who the really skilled managers are to who is involved in risky behavior.

Algorithms that measure influence and motivation are part of a new group of analytic tools — from pre-employment analytics to on-the-job assessments — that can help a company determine your value throughout your career.

If these tools do become, as I believe they will, a fact of life in organizations, what are those data attributes that you should be aware of — and those you should avoid — as you build your digital footprint?

Elizabeth Charnock CEO, Cataphora

To learn more, I spoke with Elizabeth Charnock. In addition to founding Cataphora she has written a book, E-Habits: What You Must Do to Optimize Your Professional Digital Presence (McGraw-Hill, 2010).

One big point to consider in building a digital persona, says Charnock, is aggregation — the way you assemble and publicize information about yourself over time.

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Comment (1)
Tim
"So decide who you want to be and stick to that. If you want to be a provocateur and piss people off, go for it. But do it consistently."
And how is this approach different from creating a persona that may or may not be who you truly are? The absurd conclusions that a software application can draw from online postings are infinite. Applications are already screened by software that eliminates many qualified candidates; now we get software that draws conclusions about who we are from online postings strewn across the internet. I see this as a fad - at best. Surely it will be used but the coming generations of employees will not care nor change their approach to life online, IMO. This is ominous only to older workers.