This problem is HUGE. It has to be negotiated in that particular workplace. A clear distinction needs to be made between work use and personal use. With sites like YouTube, eBay, and Facebook and access to instant messaging and email tempting us at every turn, it can be difficult to resist personal Internet usage at work. Copyright © 2021 Elsevier B.V. or its licensors or contributors. An effective internet and email policy that helps employees understand what is expected of them regarding how they use their devices for work is a must for employers and employees. Develop and maintain a culture of trust. Completely cutting off the Internet for personal use may not be the best approach. If you look at the literature in labour studies, the questions of agency, power, autonomy, and flexibility have been some of the key issues in the labour movement in North America and many workplaces around the world. ► Being young, a racial minority & male positively predicts cyberslacking. It can be beneficial for employers to let employees take a mental break because they can check their personal e-mails and social media, but then their employees don’t go anywhere else, they don’t have to go and find a creative way to circumvent certain restrictions. If you have permission to use the Internet at work, you must ensure that this never: takes place at the expense of contractual hours interferes with the Organisation’s work relates to a personal business interest involves the use of chat rooms or similar services. Most workers understand that their major task is to do their work. Also, there is no scientific consensus on the link between personal internet use at work and productivity. In this study, personal Internet use is defined as the use of Internet for all non-work-related activities, either goal driven or not. Using the internet to search for vacation deals or to go on personal social media sites typically does not fall into the acceptable use category—unless you happen to be a travel agent or a social media manager. As more and more employees regularly check their work e-mail and complete assignments in non-working hours, the old distinction between work and personal time is blurring. Internet browsing can have a positive impact on employees's emotions, allowing a measure of stress release. The line between personal social media use and work-related social media use is getting blurred in some cases. The problems arise with allowed access to personal email accounts, social networking sites, auction sites, etc. How do you think people should approach personal internet use at work? While not every person has access to the Internet at work, the majority do. By circumventing certain prohibitions imposed by the employer, it will actually take the employee more time but they will still be doing it. Within professions that use computers, … This is another area where it is difficult to distinguish between times of activity or inactivity. Use the Internet for your own personal use on your unpaid lunch break only. … It can also be multi-screening when you’re doing some kind of work, but you’re passively watching some kind of show or listening to a podcast as well. There are so many different dimensions and sides to the story. Findings of this study provide useful insights to … In our age, there is more and more task-oriented work so whenever you have different tasks, you have periods of time when you are inactive and there is no work. Alex: With more and more digital technologies and algorithms being introduced in the workplace, we are seeing that a lot of work that used to require human input is or has already disappeared. Companies that have a reasonable approach and understand that people need to take a mental break and let them use technology for personal use — those companies experience less alienation in general. A reasonable amount of personal Internet use may, in fact, help employees be more productive, allowing them to juggle personal and work obligations more effectively. Read your employer’s Internet usage and social media policy carefully. We are seeing a profoundly new way of engaging in certain personal activities in the workplace. Nowadays, beyond wages and compensation, employees really value flexibility and autonomy. During the work day, employees routinely check social networking sites, read current news articles, engage in online banking and shopping, watch YouTube videos, and book weekend travel. There are many different reasons why someone would use a smartphone or internet-enabled device while at work. Some research shows when you introduce digital technologies in the workplace and when you allow employees to use them for personal reasons — productivity suffers. Without a doubt, the Internet has revolutionized the way people play and work. One of the most controversial issues is personal use of technology at work, which is often referred to as cyberloafing, a voluntary act of employees using technology for non-work-related purposes during working hours . Use progressive discipline with employees who repeatedly violate your expectations and trust. They take a much needed mental break so they can continue working. The counter-argument can be: “that podcast actually helps me do my work.” This is where it gets complicated when it comes to policy setting and how employers should treat those types of behaviours at work because there are a lot of blurred lines, It’s really impossible to treat all personal internet use in the workplace as one phenomenon. Employee internet usage policy elements What is appropriate employee internet usage? Most workers understand that their major task is to do their work. It could be a matter of personal resistance — some workers are dissatisfied with some kind of condition in the workplace and in order to retaliate, to take some time back, they engage in personal activities at work. Your boss can monitor your personal computer if and when you connect to the work network. currently studying the use of digital technologies at work. Companies can control non-work-related use of the internet by limiting internet access to certain controlled points within the company, such as the library, or to specific "approved" websites. The parameters for computer use at work (and even at home) are often confusing. The counter-argument can be: “that podcast actually helps me do my work.” This is where it gets complicated when it comes to policy setting and how employers should treat those types of behaviours at work because there are a lot of blurred lines. The trouble here is that, in some workplaces, employees are required to use social media to promote their company or products to do something for the employer. Report: Personal Internet use at work out of control Who cares about corporate IT policies? There should be a very realistic picture as an employer as to why, how and to what extent people use these technologies as work. As communicators, I and my team could give ample stories of the foolish things … In our age, there is more and more task-oriented work so whenever you have different tasks, you have periods of time when you are inactive and there is no work. Cyberslacking, typically defined as the use of Internet and mobile technology during work hours for personal purposes, is a growing concern for organizations due to the potential in lost revenue; however, the majority of academic research in this area has focused on a limited number of cyberslacking behaviors and/or employed small, non-representative samples. McGill University’s Alex Miltsov breaks down some of the biggest questions surrounding the growing phenomenon. This is another area where it is difficult to distinguish between times of activity or inactivity. It could just be a matter of figuring out if your kids are alright. Alex: We know that e-mail is by far the most popular thing workers use for personal digital technology at work and we also see that there is now a spike in social media use. 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