The internet is a wonderful tool but, for every website that is helpful to a business, there’s another that is certainly the opposite. A few minutes a day spent catching up on news headlines, or checking personal emails and social media updates probably isn’t a car crash, but there are some sites that can tempt employees to waste a lot of time. Sometimes the way forward is to block access to those websites entirely. There are a couple of ways content filtering can be done.

Blocking Websites from the Network

To block your employees from accessing websites it’s possible to make these websites inaccessible from your entire office network. To do this, you’ll need to adjust the settings on your router – though that’s not easily done with some routers. Also, you might want to allow some people access to certain websites, or freedom to go anywhere on the internet, for the purposes of their specific work role. You may need to invest in some redesign of your infrastructure if you need more flexible content filtering.

Using Extensions

If you don’t want to fiddle with your router’s settings there are other options. Free extensions that allow your employees to self-monitor are available. But if your staff can be relied upon to monitor their own internet use responsibly, you may not need to use content filtering at all. Training that emphasises the problems of unlimited internet use (including security threats from undesirable websites) may be enough.

Other Considerations

If employees are spending time on websites unrelated to work, you should probably ask why they are becoming distracted in the first place. One study showed that blocking websites did help employees to be more focused and productive, but their stress levels were higher. The same study showed that some employees would find other ways to take a break, so content filtering isn’t always the answer.

Do you need better control over the websites your employees visit? Give us a call at (973) 882-4644 to discuss options and solutions that will suit your organization’s needs.