Humanyze is a tracking tool in the form a smart employee badge which combines a microphone, accelerometer and other sensors. It collects massive amounts of behavioral data from employees, which businesses can use to analyze and improve the productivity of their workforce.
Each badge is worn by an individual employee and collects over 40 pieces of data daily — including how much they moved around, the tone of their voice and if they leaned in when speaking to co-workers. This data is uploaded to the cloud, where it can be fed into other business metrics via a dashboard, enabling companies to gain insight into how behaviors affect overall company performance. The company can then begin to make adjustments to its employee relations and see how effective their changes are through A/B testing.
The startup behind the big data wearable — Humanyze — was launched from the MIT Media Lab. They have already begun a partnership with Bank of America, testing out the system on some of their 10,000 employees, with interesting results. For example, having noticed that employees interact most with each other during the overlap of their lunch breaks, the company experimented with giving one group of employees group lunch while keeping another on the staggered schedule. They were able to ascertain that group lunch had an overwhelmingly positive effect on the employee’s performance: it reduced stress — which is measured by tone of voice — by 19 percent and it significantly increased staff efficiency — call completion time rose by 23 percent.
All data is privacy protected and participating companies are not able to access individual’s data. Furthermore, Humanyze insist on an opt-in agreement, meaning businesses cannot use the system without their staff signing up. What other businesses could make use of big data in this way?