Staff Internet misuse costs business £9.6 billion per year

Employee Internet misuse is costing UK businesses £9.6
billion a year on lost productivity according to new research

A study by Websense shows that 44 per cent of employees who
have Internet access spend an average of three hours per week surfing sites for
personal use at work.

Douglas Wride, chief financial officer for Websense, believes
the findings suggest that while the Internet can promote efficient working it
is also a distraction for employees and can affect productivity if it is not
managed effectively by employers.

Websense based its cost of misuse on the average UK
non-manual salary of £11.88 per hour, as reported in the most recent UK New
Earnings Survey.

Wride said, “Nine billion pounds is actually a conservative
number when you factor band-width loss, storage costs and HR costs associated
with free and open Internet use in the workplace. However there is a flip side
to the story – the Internet is an incredibly powerful and useful business tool,
if managed correctly.

“By giving employees managed access to the Internet
companies can provide access to banking, travel, shopping facilities at
appropriate times and block out offensive content at all times helping to
create a pleasant working environment.”

By Katie Hawkins

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