Workers waste two hours a day on social networks


17 Jul 2009

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Irish workers spend up to two hours a day on social networks such as Facebook, Twitter and Bebo while at work, at a time when their employers are seeking to make them more productive.

The survey by marketing agency Simply Zesty reveals that 9pc of people who don’t have access to social networks at work will still manage to spend two hours a day on social-networking sites.

“This survey is a real eye opener for employers who might be struggling at the moment with staff wages, as I’m sure they will be stunned to find out that a quarter of their staff are surfing social-networking sites during work,” explained Niall Harbison, co-founder of Simply Zesty.

The survey was conducted over two days and the Irish public were quizzed on a number of issues around their use of social media.

Over 300 people took part and the results show that social media via sites such as Facebook, Bebo and Twitter are playing a bigger part in people’s day-to-day lives.

This is clearly evident from the finding that 25pc of respondents spend up to two hours or more on social networks at work, compared to 9pc of respondents who claimed they weren’t able to access social networks at work.

The survey also demonstrates that more businesses are using social media themselves. When asked if their business or company has a blog, 58pc answered that they did. Social media has also affected the way that we seek employment – with 43pc of respondents answering that they had used social media to find a job.

The findings highlight that the Irish public are becoming more adept with their use of social media. Around 33pc of respondents answered that they spend more than two hours each day on social media, while a staggering 89pc said they had left comments on blogs or news articles.

The way we access content online is also changing – 73pc of respondents said they use their mobile to access social media.

While we are seemingly confident with being open and personal online – with 77pc of respondents saying they socialise online – when asked where they are most likely to store photos, 60pc answered ‘on my hard drive’.

This compares to a combined total of 40pc of respondents who use photo-sharing sites Flickr, Facebook and Pix.ie.

There are clearly some areas, however, where the Irish public aren’t ashamed in getting a bit personal – some 38pc of users answered that they had “met someone romantically or flirted through social media”.

Irish-specific social networks are clearly competing against the ‘established’ names. When asked to rate a selection of social networks from 1-10, Irish forum boards.ie was selected as the best by 7pc of users, compared to Bebo, which had just 4pc of the top vote.

“The survey shows that the Irish are starting to become more social online and carry out common tasks such as watching videos and job-hunting and even looking for love!” said Harbison.

By John Kennedy

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