3 in 5 Singaporeans idle on messaging apps during office hours, but only for a short portion of time: Survey

The survey conducted by recruitment agency Michael Page found that 91 per cent of respondents spend less than an hour on personal matters at work.
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Do you use WhatsApp or Telegram to talk to your friends while at work? A recent survey has revealed that three in five Singaporeans idle on messaging apps during office hours.

The survey – conducted by recruitment agency Michael Page of 1,328 professionals in Singapore – found that 59 per cent of respondents have ongoing conversations with friends and family via messaging apps while they’re at work.

But this doesn’t mean that they’re unproductive, as 91 per cent of respondents spend less than an hour on personal matters at work.

Read also: Singaporeans worked almost 9 hours a day in 2018 – the lowest in a decade

This includes chatting with colleagues about personal matters, which 46 per cent of respondents said they do at work. Additionally, 25 per cent of respondents said they scroll through social media during working hours.

Michael Page

Staying connected to work outside of office hours

The report released on Wednesday (July 10), also said that many respondents are staying connected to their work even outside the office. About 86 per cent of respondents have a work device, including laptops (47 per cent), smartphones (30 per cent) and tablets (9 per cent).

Michael Page

Only 26 per cent of respondents with a work device use it for personal matters, the survey found. In addition, half of those with work devices said the devices had a positive impact on their work-life balance.

Read also: Work-life balance has become the top reason why Singapore employees leave their jobs

And despite being connected outside office hours, eight in 10 respondents said they were happy with their current work-life balance.

Even though seven in 10 respondents have responded to calls and emails outside of office hours, 84 per cent of them said it was because they had responsibilities that required them to be contactable.

The survey also found that respondents value a flexible work environment, as 55 per cent said it gives them a better work-life balance, while another 39 per cent said it makes them more productive at work, The remaining 6 per cent said flexible arrangements allow them to spend more time with family.

Michael Page

In response to the results, Nilay Khandelwal, managing director at Michael Page Singapore, said that work-life balance is an “essential consideration for all professionals in Singapore”.

“Success at work is now defined by what you can achieve both in and out of the office,” she said, adding that companies that enable employees to optimise work-life balance have an advantage in attracting talent.

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