January 25, 2019

3 Powerful Use Cases for User Behavior Analytics

An ActivTrak employee looking at a UBA software

User Behavior Analytics (UBA) is the most important and rapidly growing tool of business intelligence solution for any organization. Before user behavior analytics, organizations used to invest in multiple tools like anti-malware, log management system or SIEM tools to secure their organizations of any threat. These tools proved to offer limited solutions to advanced cyber attacks and efficiency management.

User Behavior Analytics offers better security because it focuses more on individual user events and less on system events. User behavior analytics help businesses make sense of the collected data. It utilizes artificial intelligence, machine learning, statistics, and algorithms, to establish a baseline of normal activity, then uses that to recognize patterns of unusual user behavior within the data collected so that it can flag administrators.

This article highlights the three powerful use cases of User Behavior Analytics and their importance.

Insider Threat Detection

Protecting the organization against insider threats is of crucial importance in current times. Because of the internet and its facilitated access to data and files, the organization becomes more vulnerable. A lot can go wrong in the case of insider threats. Verizon’s 2018 Data Breach Investigations Report (DBIR) states that 92.4% of malware is delivered by email. Employees can compromise company data unknowingly by phishing emails, theft or downloading content that has malware. These “negligent insiders” account for up to 51% of insider incidents.

Organizations also become victims of malicious insiders and credential thefts. A former or current employee many times plays a significant role in leaking insider information to the press or a competitor for monetary gains or revenge. Some of the intruders are efficient in the use of technology and cover their digital trace so the theft or problem they created does not point back at them. In such situations, it becomes difficult to collect proof against the intrusion.

It is essential to have some insider threat detection to avoid such incidents. That’s where user behavior analytics software plays an important role. Installing UBA software works security measure against such threats. If someone tries to break into your organization’s network, you have the ability to receive a notification about the activity. If someone tries to copy data to an external drive or mail it to a person outside the company, you will know. This way you can secure your organization against internal and external attacks. Features such as alarms help to take screenshots and videos of any suspicious activity. It will warn you of any activity via notifications. This way you will have activity data that provides enough proof against the intruder to take necessary actions.

A group of ActivTrak employees and their computers showing UBA software

Organizational Efficiency

Are you getting the most out of your team in terms of productivity? Is there a more efficient way to accomplish your goals? Sometimes unintentional time-wasting and inefficient workflows can have significant impacts on a company’s bottom line. Utilizing user behavior analytics software can help an organization streamline their operations and get their team back on track.

UBA software can create a digital twin of your operations, creating logs and screenshots for activities from each employee. This insight allows administrators to analyze long-term trends in productivity. The software can then tell supervisors where inconsistencies in productivity lie before looking into the causes. These inefficiencies can range from employee burnout to poorly timed meetings.

Tracking trends and learning when and why employees are their most productive is crucial in maximizing performance. Using this data can lead to a better distribution of the workload by identifying employees who may be burnt out. Maybe it’s the fact that meetings are right in the middle of some employees’ most productive periods. Simply shifting meetings to times when employees are typically off task could boost workflow efficiency immediately.

Users can utilize the data gathered by UBA programs within weeks of installation and immediately begin to make adjustments that can lead to a boost in productivity. 75% of employees say at least two hours are wasted every day. If you use the average hourly wage of ~$24.50 and multiply it by that two wasted hours per day then multiply that by the 261 working days in 2019 that’s $12,789 wasted per year by one employee!

Using a data-driven approach is an excellent way to analyze where the primary time-wasting sources are coming from and how to remedy them.

Workforce Management

When gauging employee engagement, employers will generally use a survey. Questionnaires have been an accepted standard of measuring data since about 1838. But since 2015, the use of surveys has quickly increased. In its place is the use of employee monitoring data, which is projected to be used by roughly 80% of companies by 2020 according to a recent Gartner report.

Ideally, you would use a source of unbiased data to measure something like employee engagement. Luckily, using user behavior analytics software can help answer questions. Keeping track of measures such as time on productive websites and apps can be an unbiased way to tell whether or not an employee is engaged. A Deloitte Insights report found that 79% of businesses have retention and engagement problems. Finding ways to increase engagement can increase retention and in turn increase profitability.

Utilizing these metrics to help employees improve day-to-day is an excellent tool to keep users motivated. Gamifying engagement is an effective way of boosting productivity. Using measures like the ones mentioned above, an administrator can reward top employees and provide incentives to encourage others.

With all of the data user behavior analytics programs collect, an employer can find trends in when employees are most productive and use this information to A/B test scheduling changes, adjust software tools, or re-distribute roles and responsibilities to streamline processes.

Utilizing User Behavior Analytics Software

User behavior analytics software is a versatile tool that many successful companies are taking advantage of for a variety of needs. These programs can become a crucial part of any company’s BI stack, helping with anything ranging from securing an organization’s data to increase productivity and morale.

Before making the move to commit to specific software, researching what details are most important for you is the first step to choosing the ideal UBA software for you. Whether those features are security inspired or productivity based, there’s a product out there that can improve your company. There are a growing number of UBA programs in the market nowadays, all of which have different features that suit different tasks.

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