General 5min de Leitura - 26 de August de 2020

How much your company loses with lack of productivity associated with misuse of the internet

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The use of the Internet in a corporate environment has transformed the daily activities of many businesses, helping companies of varying sizes and segments to achieve differentiated results in increasingly competitive and pulverized markets.

However, the advent of the internet has also brought some challenges for companies. One of them is associated with high dependence on the internet, as companies have 100% of their operation dependent on this resource.

This dependency becomes more latent, day after day, in view of the constant migration of applications to totally web platforms. Instant messaging, e-mail, collaboration tools, ERPs and other Apps, widely used in corporations, are examples to consider.

Still on the context associated with the internet, it is important to take into account the impacts generated by the misuse of the resource in a corporate environment, this being the main theme of our blog post. The contextualization about the topic will be based on the results of the research on the profile of Internet usage in companies, together with the productivity calculator, used to estimate the cost generated by the misuse of the internet in corporate environments. Continue reading and simulate results based on your business data.

Profile of Internet usage in companies

To contextualize the problem, it will be used data from the survey carried out by OSTECand NEOTRIAD, which aimed to trace the profile of Internet usage in Brazilian companies. The survey reached collaborators of organizations of various sizes and segments, spread across 19 Brazilian states, during a period of 3 months.

The first item highlighted in the survey was the high degree of dependence on the use of the Internet in companies. Approximately 57% of the respondents reported that it would be very difficult to carry out their work activities in case of unavailability of the internet resource. That is, a loss that generates total unavailability of the internet resource, would bring representative impacts to more than half of the company’s collaborators.

In addition to the concept of availability, the research made it possible to analyze other data associated with the use of the Internet, such as: time of permanence in websites, characteristics of the accesses, and alternative means to make use of applications not associated to the labor activities.

These accesses also have a great impact on employee productivity and this was evidenced through the research results. The results showed that 21% of collaborators use the Internet for non-work purposes with high frequency, 61.4% infrequently, and only 17.5% do not use the Internet for personal purposes.

In this sense, it is still worth mentioning that 62.6% of employees affirm they use alternative meansto access content not related to work, through personal devices, avoiding access through the corporate network. This data suggests that, among the respondents who stated they did not use corporate access, a good share use mobile connections for this purpose.

Among the most accessed content, during working hours, news channels were highlighted with 63%, instant communicators with 50%, social networks, 46% and YouTube, 31%. Once again, the research identifies behaviors that inspire care, since lack of productivity may not be the only problem generated by accesses not associated to work activities. Based on the characteristics of users’ accesses, it is important to evaluate the existence of concurrent traffic, especially those that may hinder critical applications for business operation.

Still with regard to accesses, we questioned the participants about time invested in non-work-related activities, with the use of the Internet, and 54% of the respondents reported that they spent less than one hour with this type of activity, 31% from 1 to 2 hours and 5% 3 to 4 hours. The number of hours invested in idle activities will be one of the parameters used to calculate the cost generated by the bad use of the internet in companies.

The last data used to subsidize the estimation of the expense generated by the misuse of the Internet is associated with the perception of the respondents regarding the gain of productivity after using part of their time in idle activities on the internet. Faced with this question, ~25% of the respondents reported that this behavior impaired the development of work activities, ~48% reported that their performance was not altered and the other ~26%, reported that they perceived a performance gain, because they feel more motivated to work.

According to the survey, 73% of the respondents do not attribute performance gainto the use of the internet in idle activities, suggesting that for this survey sampling the hours invested in this type of activity characterize direct/indirect prejudice to the business.

Cost of misuse of internet

With the market references obtained through the research, and the data collected in your company, it will be possible to estimate the cost generated by the bad use of the internet in the company. All data collected will be entered in the productivity calculator, which will aid in generating the results.

The first data that must be collected for insertion in the calculator is the time invested by employees in activities not related to work, making use of the internet (time in minutes).

Tip: If your company has a security solution that allows visibility into Internet usage, use the data in the navigation reports to assist in its estimation.

With the established time estimate, it will be possible to take the next step, which is to estimate the number of employees that will be part of the estimate, that is, that use the Internet for purposes not associated to work. For this we suggest that you use the percentages obtained through the search, or reports made available by specialized security solutions.

Example: According to the survey, ~73% of collaborators are impacted by the lack of productivity associated with improper use of the internet, so if the company has 100 collaborators in its table, the reference used in the calculation will be 73 employees.

The next step is to report the average monthly hours of company collaborators. With this data it will be possible to estimate the average value/hour invested in these employees. Remember: this is an estimate. Do not rely on 100% reliable data.

To finalize the phase of variable collection for the calculation, we suggest you to estimate the average salary of the employees involved in the analysis.

Tip: If it is in the interest of the company to bring greater precision to the results, target the employees in sectors or hierarchical levels, and apply the calculation separately.

With this data, access the productivity calculator through the link, and simulate the actual data of your business, or evaluate the simulation data presented below.


Scenario: Company with 70 collaborators who depend on the internet to carry out work activities.Time invested by employees in idle activities, using the Internet: 60 minutes;Average hours worked by employees per month: 160 hours;Collaborators’ average salary: $ 2,200.00.


Estimated hours wasted per month (per collaborator): 20 hours
Estimated cost generated by non-productivity (per collaborator): $ 275.00Estimated total cost per month (all collaborators): $ 19,250
Estimated total cost per year (all collaborators): $ 231.000,00

The data used in the simulation serve as a reference for conducting deeper analyzes of the wasting attributed to the misuse of the internet. However, it is worth emphasizing that the concept of productivity is only one item, among many others, which can contribute to the generation of business losses. Competition among users’ accesses, leakage of information, data hijacking, unavailability of equipment, are other items that must be taken into account to estimate the effective cost of this type of behavior in companies.

The improper use of the internet causes a silent waste, which takes a long time to be diagnosed and treated, so it is important to implement solutions that allow visibility and management over the internet resource.

The tripod involving security, availability and productivity is highly relevant for companies’ operation, especially in times of high competitiveness.

If your company still has questions associated with solving problems caused by the misuse of the internet in corporate environments,schedule a conversation with our expert.

This post is also available in: English Português Español