A double-edged sword

Wireless gives employees greater flexibility but can infringe on personal time
By Shannon Klie
|Canadian HR Reporter|Last Updated: 07/27/2007

The growing popularity of wireless networks is changing the way employees and businesses work. Connecting to the Internet has never been easier and getting away from it all has never been harder. But wireless has the ability to help employees improve work-life balance and productivity — if it’s used properly.

“This is a double-edged sword,” says John Yardley, the director of Brock University’s Wellness Institute, a workplace health research laboratory in St. Catharines, Ont. “It has both a value and a cost.”

The technology gives employees choices and the ability to do work at times when before it would have been impossible. If that means an employee can now go home early and take her son to a soccer game because she can check e-mail at half-time, then that gives the employee more time to spend with her family while also increasing productivity, says Yardley.