According to a CROP survey conducted for the Ordre des CRHA et CRIA du Québec (ORHRI), close to 40% of workers in Quebec use the Internet and e-mail for personal reasons at work.
More specifically, 37% of Quebec workers said they often (6%), sometimes (17%) or seldom (14%) visit Internet sites or send personal e-mails during working hours.
However, 55% of those surveyed reported they never use the Internet or e-mail for personal purposes on office time. This percentage is slightly lower among young people aged 18 to 34 (47%).
“We can’t ignore the growing role the Internet plays in our day-to-day lives and in the workplace. Moreover, the survey results clearly indicate how important it is for an organization to adopt a well-defined policy on this issue and inform its employees,” explained Florent Francoeur, CHRP, President and CEO of the Ordre.
Over 20 minutes a day online
Those workers who surf the Net or use e-mail for personal reasons spend an average 22 minutes a day at this activity. This figure drops to 16 minutes however for workers aged 55 and over, compared to 23 minutes for the 18-to-34 age group.
In addition, the survey shows that women spend an average 24 minutes per day on the Net for personal purposes, versus 20 minutes for their male co-workers. In the Greater Montreal region, this average climbs to 25 minutes, in relation to only 13 minutes in the Quebec City area.
“On the whole, Internet use for personal reasons amounts to about two hours a week. Obviously, employers can control this behaviour through implementing policies, but they should also be aware of the legal guidelines governing their authority in this respect.” That’s why they should call on qualified HR professionals to come up with effective and balanced solutions,” added Florent Francoeur.