‘Time-stealing’ woman sentenced to pay former employer compensation after tracking software uncovers ‘serious abuse’

A Canadian woman was sentenced by a civil court to pay her former employer compensation for “time theft” after she was caught by tracking software claiming her hours off work.

Karlee Besse, a work-from-home company accountant in British Columbia, initially argued that she was wrongfully fired and sought $5,000 (£3,056) compensation for her unpaid salaries and severance.

However, the Reach CPA said it fired her for “theft of time” and counterclaimed for the outstanding amount of the advance made to Ms.

The firm said it found that Ms. Besse had recorded more than 50 hours on her timesheets that “did not seem to have been spent on work-related tasks”.

Reach had previously installed staff monitoring software TimeCamp on his work laptop after he started having weekly performance meetings with his manager.

The court document on the case stated: “Reach says that analysis of Ms. Besse’s timelines and TimeCamp data has detected irregularities between the timelines and the software usage logs.

“Get posted videos showing how TimeCamp tracks Miss Besse’s time and activity.

“He says the videos prove that Ms. Besse was time-stealing by recording her work time on timesheets not tracked by TimeCamp.”

Ms. Besse said she found the software difficult to use and could not distinguish between work and personal use.

But the company showed how Timecamp could distinguish between the two if and how long it had been used to access streaming services like Disney+.

Ms. Besse also said she spent a significant amount of time working on paper copies of client documents that would not be intercepted by TimeCamp, and she didn’t tell Reach because she “knew they wouldn’t want to hear it” and was afraid.

The company provided TimeCamp data showing Ms. Besse’s edition, which Besse said showed she couldn’t produce the required amount of hard copy and that details had to be entered into the software at some point, but that didn’t happen.

The accountant said ‘I’m really sorry’

Faced with the timekeeping analysis at a videotaped meeting with the company, Ms. Besse said: “Frankly, I have uploaded time on files that I have not touched and which are in no way accurate or appropriate, and I understand that and I am truly sorry for that… I cannot hide it.”

Court member Megan Stewart found that Reach had evidence of involvement in Ms. Besse’s theft when she described it as “a very serious form of misconduct”.

Rejecting the allegation of unfair dismissal, she said: “Given that trust and honesty are essential to an employment relationship, especially in a remote work environment where there is no direct supervision, I see that Ms. Besse’s abuse has resulted in an irreparable deterioration in the employment relationship with Reach and this dismissal. was proportional to the circumstances.”

He ordered Ms Besse to pay Reach a total of $2,757 (£1,691), including “indemnity for theft of debt and time” and the outstanding portion of the advance received from the company.

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