Work related Internet

The productivity challenge: Working with the iPod generation

by Dennis Szerszen  17 January 2007


According to research commissioned in September 2006 by consultant Marc Prensky, the typical 21-year old graduate entering the workplace has about 5,000 hours of game play experience, has exchanged 250,000 e-mails and instant messages, has spent 10,000 hours on their mobile phone and put in 3,500 hours surfing the internet.


2006 Web@Work Survey Results( from WebSense, 2006):

  • JOB RISK—employees feel viewing adult content at work or infecting their company with malicious spyware or a virus puts them at greater risk of losing their job than sleeping at their desk. Forty-six percent said they believe they are at risk of losing their job by visiting adult content using their work internet connection, and 30 percent said they would be likely to lose their job if they infected the company with malicious spyware or a virus, while only 11 percent believe they may lose their job if they sleep at their desk.
  • APPROVAL OF INTERNET FILTERING—although the majority (61 percent) of employees who access the internet at work utilize the web at the office for personal reasons, 92 percent of all employees reported that they believe that their company has the right to install internet filtering technology to manage which types of websites they visit.
  • OFFENSIVE OR RISKY MATERIAL—12 percent of employees said that they have had a co-worker, friend, or acquaintance send a link to their work email address that they considered offensive. Eleven percent of employees said that a co-worker, friend, or acquaintance has sent a link to their work email address to a website that they thought might contain spyware or lead to some sort of security risk.
  • COFFEE VERSUS THE INTERNET—of those that said they use the internet at work for personal reasons, half (50 percent) of them said that they would rather give up their morning coffee than give up their ability to use the internet at work for personal use.
  • TIME SPENT—93 percent of respondents said they spend at least some time accessing the internet at work. (Same as last year).
  • PERSONAL SURFING—61 percent of employees who utilize a work-owned internet connection admitted that they spend at least some time surfing non work-related websites during the work day. Of those employees who access non-work-related websites, the average time spent accessing the internet at work is 12.81 hours per week, and the average time accessing non-work-related websites at work is 3.06 hours per week. This means that, on average, 24 percent of their time spent accessing the internet is non work-related.
  • TIME SPENT ON NON WORK-RELATED WEBSITES—interestingly, there is still a discrepancy between how much time IT decision-makers think employees spend accessing non work-related internet sites at work versus the time employees say they are spending—IT decision-makers estimate that their employees spend an average of 5.7 hours per week surfing non work-related websites, while employees, on average, only admit to spending 3.06 hours per week accessing non work-related sites.
  • WEBSITES ACCESSED—among employees who access non-work-related sites at work, the top three non-work-related sites accessed are map sites such as Mapquest (83 percent), news sites (80 percent), and weather sites (76 percent).
  • BLOGGING—5 percent of employees said that they have a personal blog. Of those who have a personal blog, nearly half (46 percent) indicated that they do record work-related events or interactions with their co-workers in their personal blogs at least some amount of the time. Forty-two percent of employees said that their company has regulations that prohibit employee-blogging. Eleven percent of employees reported that they have visited blog websites during work hours. Of those employees, 31 percent said they visit them occasionally or very frequently.
  • ONLINE PORNOGRAPHY—12 percent of employees have either by accident or on purpose, visited a pornography website while at work (versus 17 percent last year). The overwhelming majority of those who have visited pornography sites at work (95 percent) said their visit to the site was accidental.
  • NON WORK-RELATED APPLICATION USE—about one in four (24 percent) employees watch or listen to streaming media at least once per week from work. This is up from last year (18 percent). One in six employees (17 percent) use instant messaging (IM) at least once per week from work. Of those employees who said they use IM, 29 percent said they use it primarily for non-work-related purposes. Eighteen percent of employees have downloaded and stored non-work-related mp3s, personal photos, video clips, or movie clips on their work computer or network.

Web@Work Survey is a comprehensive annual survey of internet and application usage in the workplace. By surveying both employees and IT management, the study reveals unique insights on employees’ surfing habits as well as IT decision-makers’ perspective on the top network problems facing today’s organizations. study shows : "the average worker admits to frittering away 2.09 hours per 8-hour workday, not including lunch and scheduled break-time.

The biggest distraction for respondents? Personal Internet use. 44.7% of the more than 10,000 people polled cited web surfing as their #1 distraction at work. Socializing with co-workers came in second at 23.4%. Conducting personal business, "spacing out," running errands, and making personal phone calls were the other popular time-wasting activities in the workplace.

Employees say they're not always to blame for this wasted time, however. 33.2% of respondents cited lack of work as their biggest reason for wasting time. 23.4% said they wasted time at work because they feel as if they are underpaid

Men and women waste about the same amount of time per day....

 the older people are, the less time they waste at work."

35% of American say that the Internet has greatly improved their ability to do their job. That is up from 21% who believed that in 2001. (Pew Internet & American Life, April 2006).


“As broadband connectivity in the home continues to rise, we’re seeing some online spending shift from work computers to home computers,” commented Mr. Fulgoni.  “Nonetheless, online buying at work still accounts for as many e-commerce dollars as buying from home. This could indicate that ‘old habits die hard’ – while also reflecting consumers’ valuing of the workplace as the location where they’re able to confidentially buy gifts online for immediate family members (Dec. 2006)”

In another study, "ComScore analyzed online shopping trends in 2005 and found that Monday and Tuesday had the highest shares of consumer spending, each with 18% of total sales for the week; Wednesday had 17% of sales; Thursday 15% and Friday 16%. Sales fell off markedly on Saturday and Sunday, averaging 9% and 8% of a week's total sales, respectively.

The highest percentage of dollars spent online during a typical weekday occurs between 11 a.m. and noon, followed by 4 p.m. to 5 p.m. and then 3 p.m. to 4 p.m., comScore says. By far, consumers spend the fewest dollars online in the hours between midnight and 8 a.m.

Gian Fulgoni, comScore's chairman, says online shopping in its early years was done predominantly from work, where employees had access to high-speed Internet that made it less tedious than using their dial-up connections at home. Consumers continue to do the bulk of their shopping at the workplace, and not just over lunch break, even though three-quarters of all households with Internet now have broadband. "In the online world, you really have to get your ads and your marketing out in the day," Mr. Fulgoni says.

About 58% of all online shopping is done at work, down just 1% from a few years ago. And one of the busiest online shopping days isn't Black Friday -- the day after Thanksgiving when people crowd the malls -- but rather on what's now known as "Cyber Monday," the Monday following Thanksgiving when people return to work."


Finding a job:

Career Web Sites Visited by Nearly 50 Million Europeans Each Month During Q4 2006, According to comScore Networks


Top European Career Sites, by Unique Visitors in Europe, Age 15+*

Average Monthly Unique Visitors, Q4 2006

Total Europe – Home and Work locations

Source: comScore World Metrix


Average Monthly Unique Visitors During Q4 2006 (000)

Category Reach


Total Internet Population – Europe



Career Services and Development Category






Bundesagentur für Arbeit



ANPE Sites









* Excludes traffic from public computers such as Internet cafes or access from mobile phones or PDAs.

** Percent of Career category users who visited the individual site

Government-run Web site


Vertical Search Engines Needed for B2B

"A 2006 study by Outsell reported a 31.9 percent failure rate among business users when researching topics on major search engines.

Another recent study by Convera shows that professionals in virtually every industry cannot find important work-related information on the major search engines. While frustrating for B2B players, this current situation represents a significant opportunity for vertical search...

Only 11 percent always find what they are looking for on the first attempt.
• Only 43 percent always find what they are looking for after several attempts.
• Only 21 percent feel their query is always understood. (Prescott, Jan. 2007)"










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