As a business owner in Australia, you may be considering implementing GPS tracking as a way to monitor the movements and activities of your employees. While GPS tracking can provide many benefits, it is important to be aware of the legal considerations that apply to its use. In this blog post, we will outline some key points to be aware of when using GPS tracking for employee monitoring in Western Australia.
The Surveillance Devices Act 1998 (WA) sets out the legal framework for the use of surveillance devices, including GPS tracking devices, in Western Australia. Under this act, it is generally unlawful to install, use, or maintain a tracking device to track the movement of a person without their consent. There are some exceptions to this general rule. Some of these include, where the tracking is carried out to protect the person being tracked, or where the person being tracked has consented to the tracking. It is also an offence to install, maintain, or use a tracking device to record or listen to private conversations without the consent of all parties within the conversation.
Business owners should be aware that the Surveillance Devices Act applies to both overt and covert tracking devices, and that it is an offence to use a covert tracking device unless certain exceptions apply. It is important to seek legal advice to ensure compliance with this act, as well as any other relevant state or federal laws that are applicable, such as privacy laws and employment laws.
Obtaining employee consent is a key factor to consider when using GPS tracking for employee monitoring. It is important to be transparent with employees about the tracking and the purpose for which it is being carried out. This can be done through the use of employment agreements or policies that outline the tracking and any other relevant information. It is also advisable to regularly review and update GPS tracking policies and procedures to ensure they are current and in compliance with the law.
Here are some benefits that having GPS tracking in your business can provide:
- Improved Fleet Management: GPS tracking can provide real-time visibility into the location and movement of your fleet, allowing you to optimise routes, reduce fuel costs, and improve efficiency. It can also help you track and monitor driver behaviour, such as speeding or unnecessary idling, which can help you reduce maintenance costs and improve safety.
Enhanced safety: GPS tracking can help improve employee safety by allowing you to track the location of employees and respond to emergencies or incidents promptly. It can also help you monitor employee behaviour and identify any potential safety risks.
- Increased Productivity: By providing real-time visibility into the location and movement of your assets and employees, GPS tracking can help you identify bottlenecks and inefficiencies in your business processes. It can also help you monitor employee productivity and identify areas for improvement.
- Enhanced Customer Service: GPS tracking can help you improve the accuracy of delivery times and provide better visibility into the status of orders and shipments. This can help you deliver a better customer experience and build customer loyalty.
- Reduced Costs: GPS tracking can help you reduce fuel costs by optimising routes and reducing unnecessary driving. It can also help you reduce maintenance costs by identifying problems early and preventing costly breakdowns. In addition, GPS tracking can help you reduce theft and loss by providing real-time visibility into the location of your assets.
While GPS tracking can provide many benefits for businesses, it is important to be aware of the legal considerations that apply to its use. This is not legal advice, and we recommend seeking legal advice before implementing GPS tracking for employee monitoring in your business. By taking the time to understand the legal landscape, you can ensure that you are using GPS tracking in a way that is compliant with the law and respects the rights of your employees.
Simply Unified is based in WA however, a leading national provider of GPS tracking devices. Whilst this article covers mainly WA laws and regulations, all states and territories in Australia follow similar laws and regulations. For more information on this, or to enquire about GPS tracking, reach out to us today.