Human Resources News & Insights

Time wasters: Employees are costing you by … [INFOGRAPHIC]

Staffers aren’t working every second they’re in the office (though that’d be nice). Here’s where their time goes when it’s not toward work. 

Biz 3.0 and Time Doctor have compiled info on the myriad ways staff members find to not do their jobs.

The winner is …

We’ll give you three guesses as to the biggest time waster at work, and the first two don’t count.

That’s right: The Internet wins the day.

Workers said they waste time by:

  • surfing the Web (48%)
  • socializing with co-workers (33%)
  • conducting personal business (30%)
  • making personal phone calls (19%), and
  • taking long lunch breaks (15%).

A full 40% of people say non-related Internet surfing causes them lost productivity, and more than 30% of staffers feel it’s A-OK to surf non-work-related sites every day.

Yikes.

Got my eye on you

So what are companies doing to combat staff members’ Internet sneaking?

For some, the answer is prohibiting certain sites altogether: Over 50% of companies ban Facebook and Twitter at work, and Facebook leads the pack of most blacklisted websites.

That’s not entirely without merit: Seven out of every 100 websites accessed at work are Facebook, and people spend, on average, nearly an hour a day on the site.

But many companies are taking a different approach: employee workplace monitoring.

Nearly 50% of companies use software to track employees’ activities online at work. A similar number keep an eye on emails.

Monitoring employees’ computer usage at work can have some serious legal flaws, but it can also be done right — if you know what you can and can’t do.

Out the door it goes

Like social media, email also eats up a lot of employees’ time. Proof: Seven out of every 10 employees check their personal email at work.

Perhaps the scariest statistics of all, though?

  • Nearly 15% of workers have admitted to emailing confidential information, and
  • 6% of staff members have used email to transmit confidential customer data.

Can you stop time wasting?

So what, if anything, can be done to keep workers from wasting time?

It’s likely you have a policy prohibiting employee use of the Internet for personal reasons. But guess what? It probably doesn’t work.

The journal Computers in Human Behavior recently published a study that found that policies preventing “cyberloafing” don’t work unless they’re enforced.

In fact, researchers found that between 60% and 80% of the time staff members spend on the Internet at work had nothing to do with their jobs.

Threats of termination and certain detection software can get people in line, but the best approach is to let employees know of other workers who were disciplined or fired for inappropriate Internet usage.

Check out the full infographic below:

Wasted Time in the Workplace - Infographic
Time Doctor – Track your time. Track your team’s time. Know EXACTLY what is REALLY going on.

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