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Study: how many Americans sneak in gaming at work?

Publish Date: 08/01/2024

Do you sneakily crush more candy than agenda items during a work meeting? And do you exchange at least as many words with your Wordfeud opponent as with your colleagues on a workday? A recent study by Sweepstakes Casino shows that more than 3 out of 5 working Americans secretly play games during work hours. We surveyed over 2,000 working Americans and found out which professional group is most guilty of playing video games on the boss's time, and how many people have ever considered calling in sick to enjoy a day of uninterrupted gaming. Spoiler: a lot!

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Some of the key findings:

  • 64% of working Americans play video games during work hours.
  • Of all professions, marketers tend to engage in this behavior the most.
  • 83% have considered taking a sick day or have actually done so to make time for gaming during work hours.

Don't let the boss hear this: a whopping 3 out of 5 working Americans admit to gaming during work hours. Almost half of them (46%) confess to doing this about 2 to 3 times a week, while a quarter of respondents limit it to once a week. Additionally, 14% play video games 4 to 5 times a week on company time, and 12% even do it daily.

When asked about the amount of time spent gaming at work per week, the majority - 45% - cap it at a maximum of 30 minutes. Nearly a third (30%) extend this to 30 minutes to 1 hour, while 16% snatch 1 to 2 hours a week from the boss's time for gaming. Lastly, 5% of respondents do it for 2 to 3 hours a week, and 4% even indulge for 3 hours or more.

However, it seems this isn't enough for many: a startling 83% have considered calling in sick to be able to game during work hours, or have actually done it. Surprisingly, only 1 in 20 claims to have ever faced consequences for gaming on the job.

Occupations that game the most at work

The big question is: which professional groups are most guilty of gaming during work hours? Our research reveals that marketers top the list, with an impressive 85% admitting to playing video games on the boss's time. They are closely followed by those in Finance (78%) and Sales (74%). People in Customer Service and Healthcare round out the top 5.

Among all states, Colorado takes the lead. A whopping 88% of workers there admit to indulging in a video game during work hours. Georgia takes second place with 87%, followed by a tie between Nevada and Utah, both at 86%.

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Why do we game during work hours?

A typical workday comes with a load of tasks and responsibilities. Nevertheless, that doesn't deter us from occasionally grabbing our phones, tablets, or computers for a game during work hours. When asked about the primary reason for this, more than half attribute it to boredom. Just over a third chalk it up to stress relief, while 2% do it for socializing. After all, among all the respondents, 21% say that gaming during work hours has a positive impact on their relationships with colleagues and supervisors.

A quarter believe gaming during work hours boosts productivity

Interestingly, 6 out of 10 respondents believe that gaming during work hours doesn't affect their productivity. Almost a quarter even claim that it enhances their productivity. Only 16% believe it has some negative impact on productivity, and 1% goes so far as to think it has a significant negative influence.

Lastly, we asked our respondents which device they primarily use for gaming during work hours. It turns out that the phone is by far the most popular choice. 77% admit to grabbing their smartphone for some gaming fun. Only 18% prefer a computer, while 3% usually opt for a tablet.

Methodology

In December 2023, we conducted a survey among 2,453 working Americans. Of all respondents, 52% identified as male, 46% as female, and 2% as non-binary. The average age was 39.7 years.

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