Over the years, the atmosphere in offices around the world has changed a lot. Nowadays, the presence of the Internet and smartphones at workplaces not only gives employees the freedom to interact easily with the rest of the world but also gives them various tools to enhance their productivity and creativity more than ever before. But is the Internet really helping organizations boost their production? Or is it becoming a tool for distraction and various other hidden problems?
You may have noticed that many organizations have banned the use of mobile phones at worksites altogether, while some organizations monitor their employees' computers and have blocked popular social networking sites.
While the Internet should be used as a tool to only send important documents and to create content for the organization to use, its usage has crossed boundaries that are not only hindering productivity, but also creating many problems which were not present before the Internet came along.
Here are some downsides that I have observed of having Internet in the workplace:
Lack of original ideasBefore the invention of the Internet, employees would brainstorm new thoughts and ideas to solve any problem in the office or to get better results. But now they increasingly depend on Google for this. This dependency is preventing creativity and original ideas from flourishing.
Lack of attention in the office
Employees at workplaces are less attentive than before. The use of mobile phones keeps them distracted every minute of the day. Their readiness to check every message and reply that comes on their mobiles diverts their attention from office work.
If you count the number of hours spent on unnecessary internet surfing during the day by all employees of the organization, you will find that a surprisingly huge amount of time is wasted. If that time is invested productively, the organization will benefit immensely.
Lack of quality
As I mentioned before, the excessive use of mobile phones in the workplace reduces focus and attention. Instead of focusing on finding a solution to a problem or working on boosting the company's sales, employees keep browsing on social media. Such behavior in the workplace prevents an organization from going beyond a certain range of quality standards. Within such an environment, no one talks about ideas and inventions. The only goal becomes to somehow complete the given task and find time for Internet surfing.
Depression and negative thoughts about the organization
Sometimes, reading someone's quick success story on the Internet during office hours fills an employee's mind and soul with anger and resentment for their organization. Employees feel that their current organization is not only paying them less, but also wasting their talent here. Suddenly, the entire office seems to be their enemy and the worst possible place to work.
Lack of coordination between employees
In today's time, everyone is happy to keep to themselves on their mobiles. Instead of talking to each other whenever they get time during office hours, they just start surfing on their mobile phones. Even conversation during lunchtime is missing these days, as people keep using their mobiles while having their meal. The human touch is missing in offices which is ultimately a major loss for the organization.
Chances of misuse of data
Office data is vulnerable. It is now easy for any employee to steal or misuse company data. Fast Internet at work and lack of spying tools make this task even easier.
The problems mentioned above show that Internet misuse has highly increased at workplaces. This sparks another debate— Should we completely ban mobile phones at the workplace or monitor every moment of the employees? This is a topic of its own which I will discuss in the next article.