Auto-Analytics: New Tools For Better Productivity And Personal Development

April 4, 2012
In most organizations, work responsibilities have become increasingly diverse, and not just for managers.

In most organizations, work responsibilities have become increasingly diverse, and not just for managers. We work in a changing industry. New tools are being introduced for people at all levels of every organization.

As a result, more people throughout the organization have to learn how to use more tools. Most of us have to multi-task.

If you find you’re having a harder time gauging your productivity than you did in the past, you’re not alone. Most of your colleagues, subordinates and supervisors probably feel the same way.

I can remember not too long ago how much easier it was to gauge my productivity when all of my work pertained to publishing a print magazine. Those days are gone forever. I now edit a daily email news feed, organize audio interviews, video presentations, and allocate more and more time to studying ever changing technology.

But every set of challenges sets the stage for new solutions. Welcome to auto-analytics, tracking the inner workings of your mind and body to gain insight into self-improvement and personal efficiency. I came across this exciting field in Monday’s Wall Street Journal in article titled, “Employees, Measure Yourselves.”

There’s a lot to learn about this promising field, and the Internet is full of information about it.

Auto-analytic tools – with names like,,,,, – allow people to gather data about what they do at work, analyze the information and use it to improve their productivity. What’s unique about these tools, according to the Wall Street Journal, is they are designed for self improvement more than for managing people.

The article claims that companies are finding big improvements in employee performance, satisfaction and well being.

RescueTime, for instance, measures how long you spend on an open window, how long you’re idle and how often you switch windows. The software then develops charts so you can see where you’re spending your time.

The article notes there are three areas of auto-analytics: tracking screen time, collecting thoughts, and physical wellness.

What strikes me about these tools is they are not strictly work related, but focus on personal development. Every manager should be interested in giving employees opportunities to improve their personal development.

For companies in a service industry, these tools are something to share with customers and strengthen customer relationships.

To access the Wall Street Journal article, click here. Be advised that the link will not be active indefinitely.

In the meantime, there is plenty to learn about auto-analytics on the Internet. It’s worth looking into.