Cyberslacking

Reviewed by Annapoorna | Updated on Aug 27, 2020

What is Cyberslacking?

Cyberslacking refers to an act of workers being distracted by workplace technology, typically because of informal, non-work-related use of the Internet.

Many who work on a computer can use company time and equipment for online shopping, playing games, watching inappropriate videos, or interacting with friends via social media websites.

Besides, employees with workplace smartphones can engage in the same form of behaviour, along with sending personal text messages or checking personal emails during work time.

Impact of Cyberslacking

If an employee gets paid hourly and spends time cyberslacking, his boss eventually pays the employee even though not worked enough. That is the organisation's direct financial loss.

When an employee is distracted by technology in the workplace for many hours a week, she may put extra hours of work to compensate for lost time. It affects not only productivity but also the employee's stress level and work-life balance.

If the employee's work time is billed to an external company, and he spends a portion of the time cyberslacking, the customer is effectively overcharged for delivering the services. If the customer were to find out that he was being ripped off, he would potentially be able to cancel his deal with the company. He may also refuse to engage in further business with them.

Countermeasures for Cyberslacking

If a business person wants to take steps in his workplace to reduce cyberslacking, he must not only consider the solutions available but also how they are to be enforced. The easiest and most effective approach, as with any business decision, will provide the best solution to the problem.

Cyberslacking countermeasures are unique methods and policies that prevent workers from wasting organisational time, equipment, or other resources. A business person should understand that his workers may have to use company computers and access to the internet to perform their duties. For example, an employee may communicate over social media with customers.

Many businesses have gone to considerable lengths to regulate cyberslacking, owing to the high expense associated with it. Here are a few ways that certain companies use to curb it:

  • Tracking their employees' online activities using software
  • Restricting access to inappropriate or work-related sites
  • Instituting codes of conduct and punitive action for those caught cyberslacking