Humanyze is an MIT spinout that supplies badges and software to organisations that want to understand how their employees interact with one another in the physical world. It provide badges which look like a normal employee ID badge but is equipped with RFID and NFC sensors, bluetooth for proximity sensing, infrared to detect face to face interaction, an accelerometer and two microphones. The badges 'talk' to beacons set up around the office to detect proximity.
The microphones only monitor tone and volume, not content. CEO Ben Waber told our sister title Techworld that everything is processed in real time and nothing is recorded, because "from a privacy perspective it is the wrong thing to do," he said.
The company then combines this physical world data with data from work systems (primarily Microsoft) to pull in calendar and email usage data, not content. By combining this digital communications data with data from the physical world managers using Humanyze dashboards can get a "holistic view of what goes on in the company", Waber says. Managers can start to see how they spread their time between people, how different teams talk to one another, if meetings are inclusive enough and how cohesive groups are.
Employees can also access their own personal dashboards to see "what you do, how you compare to the team average. If you want a different role you can look at what they do. You can start to see how you compare, so benchmarking within your company."