Caught Twittering or on Facebook at work? It’ll make you a better employee, according to a recent study of the University of Melbourne that found people who surf the Internet for personal reasons at work are 9 percent more productive than those who don’t.
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Study favors those who use Web at work
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"Short and unobtrusive breaks, such as a quick surf of the Internet, enables the mind to rest itself, leading to a higher total net concentration for a day’s work, and as a result, increased productivity,” study author Brent Coker said.
The study looked at workers who were on the Internet for less than 20 percent of their total time in the office. Those with Internet addiction tendencies will have lower productivity, he said.
Many Oklahoma City employers aren’t taking the risks.
"The Web can suck you in,” said Liz Groom, director of information systems at McAfee and Taft. "You might have meant to jump on for five minutes and then look up and it’s been two hours.”
Consequently, the firm blocks Facebook, Twitter, online dating, fantasy football, personal e-mail and streaming media sites.
"We don’t want to be tyrannical, but do have to help people be productive,” Groom said.
At Access Financial Resources, President Troy Jones doesn’t limit Internet access, but monitors it. "Regulated entities such as ours have a responsibility to monitor all employees’ Web activity, whether it’s Facebook, just plain e-mail or surfing the Web,” Jones said.
Anglin Public Relations is in the process of establishing policies for Web 2.0 usage, principal Debbie Anglin said.
"For example, a blog about the movie you saw over the weekend should be written during off time,” Anglin said. Most social media sites date and time stamp communications, so it’s easy to see when someone posts a dozen entries during work hours, she said.