The addiction of Facebook among professionals and its impact on their working capabilities in office: Research Report

Summary:

A questionnaire about the use of Facebook was sent to 94 young professionals (between the ages of 18 and 35 years) for the purpose of identifying how their use of this controversial social networking website has influenced their social and particularly their professional lives. The questionnaire was sent via Facebook and 24 young professionals responded. While the majority of respondents used Facebook while at the office, most of them spent only a few minutes on the website. However, some respondents spent large amounts of time on the website, some even proclaiming themselves to be addicted. Introduction: The following study was designed to be a preliminary investigation into some of the aspects involved in the use of the website www.facebook.com. Several companies across the world have put a ban on the use of the social networking website as more and more employees reportedly spent more and more time on it. The research was motivated by the question of whether or not young professionals, between the ages of 18 and 35 years, really have become “addicted” to the website, as some of them claim, and also to see whether or not employees spend enough time on the website to be a reason for concern for their employers.

Problem Statement:

The famous social networking site ‘’Facebook’’ is becoming an addiction for many people and also among the professionals this may cause a serious problem to their working capabilities. Social networking is supposed to be a very important part of life but the excessive use and addiction of the Social networking sites like Facebook may have damaging consequences. The excessive and addictive use of Facebook especially among young professionals is a problem that needs attention.

Hypothesis:

The excessive and addictive use of social networking sites like Facebook effect the abilities of the young professionals.

Objectives:

To investigate if the use of Facebook among young professionals in offices is more than that of home users and to analyze the impact of using Facebook during working hours on the working capabilities of the young professionals and to find out how many young professionals use Facebook while at the office? How much time do young professionals spend on Facebook? Do young professionals regard Facebook as a waste of time? Do Facebook users think the website has improved their social lives?


Methodology:

The sample for this study consisted of the author’s own list of Facebook contacts – a total of 94 young professional people with different levels of education. The questionnaire used in this study was a non-standardised instrument constructed solely for the purpose of the study. The questionnaire consisted of 10 questions that collected data aimed at answering the research questions. Participants were asked about the amount of time they spent on Facebook as well as the regularity of their visits to the website. Participants had to give their opinion on whether or not companies should ban the use of Facebook and on whether or not it was a waste of time. Finally participants were asked about the impact Facebook has had on their social life and whether or not their social life has improved because of Facebook. All the questions were posed in a multiple choice format, where the participants had to choose the most correct answer. Participants were allowed to choose more than one answer. The questionnaire was sent out using Facebook’s messaging function and recipients were asked to reply as soon as possible, using the same function. The return rate was low; however, this might be an indication of the amount of registered Facebook users who are actually active on the website. Overall the feedback received by the author was positive, with respondents showing a high interest in the outcome of the study.


Results:

Data collection yielded 24 usable surveys. In answering the first research question, regarding the amount of young professionals who use Facebook at the office, 15 of the 24 respondents indicated that they do indeed use Facebook while at the office. In answering the second research question, regarding the amount of time spent on Facebook, four of the office users spent more than 30 minutes per session on the website, while 13 logged into the website at least once a day. Four of these users spent only a few minutes per session on the website, and three office users spent between 15 and 30 minutes per session. Of the 24 respondents, nine indicated that they never use Facebook at the office, with eight using their home computers for access. Two respondents said they used Facebook at least once a day, five said they used it a few times a week and two said they use it once a week. Four respondents indicated that they spent more than 30 minutes per session on the website, three spent between 15 and 30 minutes on the website and two spent less than 15 minutes on the website per session. In answering the third research question, on users regarding Facebook as a waste of time, of the 15 office users, five respondents thought Facebook was a waste of time and five said that companies should ban the use of Facebook. Of the home users, five thought Facebook was a waste of time and five respondents encouraged the banning of Facebook from office use.

Conclusion:

As very little data has been collected on the use of Facebook, it is hoped that this preliminary study will encourage the further investigation of this controversial subject. It seems as if home users spent much less time on the website than office users, giving rise to the question of companies’ abilities to manage their employees, as a truly addicted user will spend vast amounts of time on the website regardless of locality. It seems as if the amount of use among office users are much less than what the media wants us to believe and a possible solution is to allow the use of the website in limited amounts.

Recommendations:

Professionals must limit the time wasted on Facebook and they must try to use Facebook just for social and professional networking instead of wasting time. Facebook is a good thing to use but don’t let it be your necessity and ultimately an addiction.

References:

1. ‘’Facebook Addiction: The Life & Times of Social Networking Addicts’’ by Nnamdi Godson

2. Www.facebook.com

3. www.google.com

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