US workers spend five hours a week slacking off, costing $19.4 billion

How much time are you spending on your phone?

ANSWERING that friend request while at work may not seem troublesome, but add up all the on-the-job smartphone screen time across the country and you’re talking $19 billion in lost productivity, a new study reveals.

The average American office employee is spending about five hours a week on his or her cellphone on things that have nothing to do with the job, such as answering personal e-mail, according to the study, which was conducted for the staffing firm OfficeTeam.

Some workers are doing online shopping. Others are watching the highlights of last night’s baseball game.

“If these numbers were true for every full-time worker in the US, that would add up to $US15.5 billion [$19.4 billion] in lost productivity every week due to professionals using their mobile devices for nonwork activities,” the study’s authors posit, using…

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