Blog

Do We Really Need a Computer Feature to Tell Us We Need a Break?

Do We Really Need a Computer Feature to Tell Us We Need a Break?

Workplace stress has increasingly been focused on as a prescient problem for businesses, with an increased focus on identifying the causes and mitigating the impacts. A recently published patent from Microsoft helps to demonstrate how seriously this is now taken… although it also begs the question: do we really need technology’s help to identify when we feel stressed?

Microsoft’s Solution for Anxiety

Filed in October of 2019, and finally being published a short time ago (as of this writing), Microsoft’s patent describes their “Emotion Detection From Contextual Signals For Surfacing Wellness Insights” technology. By collecting and compiling data from assorted sources, including biometrics from fitness trackers and smart watches and usage data from Microsoft’s Office software, an employee “anxiety score” can be generated and alert the employee of their emotional change. The platform would then provide recommendations to help them wind back down, like taking a break or a brief walk.

For instance, let’s say that James has an important meeting coming up, and is starting to feel anxious about it. This anxiety could manifest itself in a few different ways—perhaps increased typos and spelling errors are popping up in the emails he’s composing, or the email is taking longer than it generally would to write up. If James’ behaviors suggest that he’s feeling anxious, a notification will pop up to inform him of his stress and how it was calculated, along with a recommendation based on his schedule to help him relieve this stress.

This Technology May or May Not Be Implemented

Let’s make something clear: filing a patent is much different than including certain capabilities in a product or service, so there’s no guarantee that these features will ever appear in Microsoft’s software solutions.

Having said that, it does show that software developers—even those of as much renown as Microsoft—are more seriously considering the importance of employee wellness and how impactful it can be to the workplace.

This Isn’t All Microsoft Has Done, Either (Along With Other Software Developers)

This patent is one more in a line of solutions that Microsoft and other software developers have designed to help promote the wellbeing of their employees.

  • Microsoft has also introduced MyAnalytics, an individualized wellness and productivity tool, as well as Viva, a Teams-based tool that combines the benefits of MyAnalytics with Workplace Analytics, an analytics tool intended to deliver insights to managers and business leaders.
  • Cisco has implemented People Insights into its Webex collaboration platform, with data broken down by individual employees, the entire team, as well as the workplace as a whole.
  • Google has also made plans to make similar data available to workers in the interest of self-awareness and improvement.

Do People Really Need An Application to Tell Them That They’re Stressed?

At first glance, this all may sound a little silly. Is (yet another) notification really the best way for one of your employees to find out that they’re feeling anxious?

In so many words: it very well could be.

While we aren’t saying that all of your team members are incapable of identifying their own emotions, they may not feel totally comfortable in responding to them in the appropriate way—in this case, stepping away from a task for a moment to decompress. This kind of feature could potentially not only help make them more aware of their own mental state in the workplace, it signals that their needs are important, that it is okay to take a break if they need one. With the kind of stress that so many have felt over this past year, this message has perhaps never been so pertinent.

What do you think? Is this kind of feature going to be more of a priority for businesses moving forward? Is it something that you’d want to focus on? If so, White Mountain IT Services is here to help. Our services and solutions are designed to help your team remain as productive as possible and provide them with the support they need, whenever they need it. Find out what we can offer your team by calling 603-889-0800 today.

By accepting you will be accessing a service provided by a third-party external to https://www.whitemtn.com/

Related Posts

Have you ever tried describing a PC issue on the phone to tech support, and you get nowhere because you’re having such a difficult time describing the problem? To be sure, this is a frustrating experience. By taking a screenshot, you can send an imag...
After a long, hard day at the office, you might be tempted to just log off of your workstation so you can get right back into it the next day. However, you also have the option to shut down the PC, which can be beneficial at times. So, what should yo...
The cloud becomes more popular in the business environment with every passing day, and it’s so prevalent that you’d have trouble finding even a single business that doesn’t use it to some degree. However, we often find that the way that the cloud is ...
When you think of a computer, you think of a machine that makes your life easier. You can look up events, check facts, record data, and so much more. However, the first computer might be something extraordinarily unexpected; a submerged treasure off ...
Fact: Millennials are entering the workforce en masse. Therefore, employers and workers from earlier generations shouldn’t be so quick to write off the generation that now makes up the largest segment of the workforce. In order to properly leverage t...
The modern worker (or really, the modern person) spends a lot of their time looking at a computer screen. Considering this, it only makes sense that their screens and the items displayed on them are arranged in a way that they like. Our tip covers a ...
Many organizations that don’t have the same breadth of funding and services might wind up spending more capital in attempts to compete with these larger organizations, but the way forward isn’t always clear. For small businesses that have trouble man...
All businesses need to take preventative measures to secure their futures, but did you know that data backup isn’t just about making sure your business survives in the event of a disaster? While natural disasters, user error, and other means of data ...
Innovation takes many forms, whether it’s implementing automated solutions to ensure tasks get done or implementing new ways to get work done by your in-house staff. Collaboration is one of the ways that your business can benefit from innovation, as ...
It’s not something that we as business owners like to think about, but the fact of the matter is that no technology you implement will last until the day you close up shop for business. To mitigate the costs of your technology failing, you need to ta...
Slow computers are one of the small annoyances in an office that can implicate a much larger issue is hidden. The frustration stems from not being able to get anything done, whether it’s because the computer isn’t responding to your commands or it’s ...
In most businesses today, the computer is an essential tool. Taking this into consideration, you need to make sure that your staff is equipped with the right tools for their given job… but which tool is the right tool? Here, we’ll review the determin...

Onsite Service Coverage Area

Although we provide remote services and support to businesses in over 20 states, onsite services are limited to within reasonable driving distance from our office in NH.  We will manage a local vendor for locations outside of our service area to provide onsite assistance when needed.

 

Onsite Computer Support Services are available to businesses within 100 miles of Nashua New Hampshire. We have excellent onsite coverage from Concord NH, south through Manchester NH, and then down into Boston. From Northern and Central Mass, we cover from Worcester, east to the North Shore, including the Salem and Portsmouth NH area.

 

White Mountain IT Services
33 Main Street, Suite 302
Nashua, New Hampshire 03064

 

603-889-0800

map nashua4 1

 

Open Positions