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Ethics and Technology

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Ethics and Technology

Why is ethics important in an organization? When employees in a company make decisions to act unethically, they affect not only the business itself, but also its shareholders, employees and customers. Employees make a myriad of choices everyday in business, if unethical; they can damage a company's productivity, profits, and reputation. Unethical decisions can come in many forms, the employee who conducts personal business on company time to the production worker who fails to report a product flaw just to meet a deadline, and even more serious is the manager who profits from illegal use of insider information. All these incidents lack ethics. In most companies today, the competitive advantage rests on the shoulders of its employees. These employees must be trusted to make the correct decision, especially when there is no one watching over their shoulder. This is where Human Resources (HR) comes in to train, educate, and communicate with employees on rights and wrongs in the workplace. Ethics is one topic that begins and ends with the employees of companies. A strong ethical reputation can give a competitive edge to an organization, improve recruitment, and help retain current employees. It encourages morale because a good ethics program supports such morale builders as openness and honesty. A company that finds a way to change the system so people can be influence to act ethically and responsibly is far more likely to succeed.

Technology causes stress in the work place. "Technostress can be defined in a number of ways. Michelle M. Weil, Ph.D. and Larry D. Rosen, Ph.D. define technostress as "our reaction to technology and how we are changing due to its influence." Technostress (computer-related stress) is a combination of performance anxiety, information overload, role conflicts, and organizational factors, according to Craig Brod. Technostress can also be defined as personal stress generated by reliance on technological devices, a panicky feeling when they fail, a state of near-constant stimulation, or being constantly "plugged-in" and the primary symptom of those who are ambivalent, reluctant, or fearful of computers is anxiety" (Brillhart, 2004). Computer technology has reached nearly every corner of modern life. The use of technology in the workplace, computers, for the older generation can be quite stressful, having to learn a new aspect of their job compared to the younger techno generation. There can be problems with technology if the internet goes down or a problem with a server will incapacitate an organization causing stress to all involved employees and customers. The demands from electronic communication include the deluge of e-mail messages both related and unrelated to work, voice mail, and a constant pressure to stay connected inside and outside of office hours. Technology provides employees, customers, and entire organization to disseminate

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