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Performance management tools see security threats

Businesses need to know that their workforce is doing what needs to be done in a timely and cost efficient manner, and that all aspects of internal performance management are being monitored. These solutions assist them in following individuals from hiring through dismissal, ensuring that training is up to date and activity on the job is productive and effective. There are many ways that these factors can add up to better employee engagement, a desirable outcome for major corporations.

However, as organizations continue to digitize all of these resources, mounting threats toward security and continuity make such internal data difficult to maintain. There are plenty of entities that would like nothing more than to steal important business information, including performance and talent management files, as these contain in-depth analyses of each worker and their most sensitive data.

This is a mounting concern with companies of all kinds, as a recent review of IT and executive sentiment uncovered. A Broadridge study, Big Data: A Big Problem for Brokerages, showed that nearly three-fourths of mutual fund and financial institutions are seeing intense challenges in managing and protecting their electronic assets. Compliance also ranked highly on the list of concerns harbored by leading corporations, as their data structures may not be up to par with some aspects of federal records mandates.

Analytics practices and big data
In terms of performance management with analytics, companies are using more of their big data assets to try and ascertain how workers are doing in their current capacities, but two-thirds of responding organizations told Broadridge that they still handle these critical functions on paper due to a lack of security or fear of information loss.

Sunny Patpatia of Patpatia and Associates told the source that financial firms especially have been trying to improve on their offerings while maintaining performance management analytics, saying that revenue and engagement tend to be higher in companies that make the best use of such systems. However, security remains a primary fear for those creating in-depth reports and scrutinizing their workers more intently, as the volume of sensitive information they manage to collect on a daily basis could put their systems at risk.

Kaspersky Labs unveiled another recent survey that showed similar concerns, but in its Key Security Trends report for 2012, the source stated that attacks could become more targeted and severe. This is especially the case in the financial sector, where server data is inherently seen as valuable, performance management analytics could be seen as an inroad to potentially harm those who work for the organization, meaning not even these files are safe if a system is breached.

The source recommended companies should focus on the weak spots in their infrastructure arrays, such as consumer mobile devices and online access points that may not have the same level of security as internal programs. Limiting access to outside entities should not curtail collaboration and networking possibilities, but in order to uphold security and continuity while still making the best use of performance management tools, businesses need to think of where attacks will be coming from and take precautions now before disaster tries to strike.