Goofing off at work actually increases worker productivity.
That’s what the Wall Street Journal reports, from a study released by researchers in Singapore in 2011. According to the article, researchers Don J.Q. Chen and Vivien K.G. Lim of the National University of Singapore, in a study titled “Impact of Cyberloafing on Psychological Engagement,” provided evidence that workers who surf the Internet during the workday actually get more done.
The study examined the work of 96 students. Three groups were split into a control group, a group that could goof off without internet access and a third group that could surf. The group that was given access to the Internet was more productive and effective at work tasks given to them than the other two groups.
Dr. Lim said people “usually choose to visit only the sites that they like – it’s like going for a coffee or snack break. Breaks of such nature are pleasurable, rejuvenating the Web surfer.”
That being said, with the popularity of Facebook, should employers prevent employees from accessing Facebook, or simply limit the time spent checking the website?
This isn’t the first study on Internet productivity. According to a study conducted at the University of Melbourne, people that engage in “workplace Internet leisure browsing” are more productive than those who don’t. The University of Melbourne study says that workers who surf within a reasonable limit of less than 20 percent of their total work time are more productive by about 9 percent.
So perhaps the most popular social networking site in Internet history is actually boosting workers’ productivity and increasing the bottom line. Employers might consider allowing a limited time budget for staff members to check in on Facebook. Keeping workers in touch with friends and family during the day might be profitable for everyone involved.