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How Much Productivity Is Lost on the Job to Sites Like Facebook?

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English106, Flickr

If you spend any of your work hours checking sites like Facebook, you aren’t alone. A new study says more than half of employees do just that when they should be working instead.

Salary.com polled 3,200 adults and found that while 64 percent visit websites unrelated to their jobs every day, that number has actually dropped 10 percent since 2008, possibly because people are now more scared of losing their jobs — or they’re busier because co-workers have been laid off and there’s extra work to do.

Here’s some more interesting findings from the study:

  • about a fifth spend an hour out of every workday visiting non-work websites.
  • Facebook is the most popular non-work-related site to visit, with 41 percent of survey respondents saying they check it when they’re on the clock. Business networking site LinkedIn came in a close second with 37 percent.
  • almost half of workers use their company-issued computers to look for new jobs.
  • while you might think it’s the youngest members of the workforce doing all this web surfing, only 15 percent of people under 25 cop to such behavior. The biggest offenders are actually employees between 26 and 35. And more education someone has, the more likely they are to make unscheduled stops on non-work sites.

The most common reasons people gave for such behavior? The majority said they aren’t challenged by their work, and others indicated they don’t have an incentive to work harder, they don’t like their jobs, or they’re simply bored.

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