MARCH 1 2012 23:09h
Firm: Workers distracted by March Madness
Challenger, Gray & Christmas Inc. said employers across the country can expect to lose millions of hours worth of productivity while the Division 1 men's basketball championship tournament is ongoing due to workers watching games online, checking scores and managing pool brackets.
The firm said employers will probably spend a total $175 million paying distracted workers during the first two days of March Madness.
"Statisticians, economists, academia and college basketball fans will likely scoff at that estimate, and rightfully so. It is to be taken with a grain of salt, as it is meant to be a tongue-in-cheek look at how technology continues to blur the line between our professional and personal lives. Ultimately, March Madness will not even register a blip on the nation's economic radar and even the smallest company will survive the month without any impact on their bottom line," said John Challenger, chief executive officer of Challenger, Gray & Christmas.
"It's an opportunity to remind workers that practicing some moderation in their March Madness viewing will go a long way toward keeping managers off their back. Meanwhile, it is equally important for employers to cut workers some slack, particularly in an economy that has left many workplaces understaffed and overworked," Challenger said.
CHICAGO, March 1 (UPI) -- A Chicago outplacement firm said employers should be aware of lost productivity from fans who follow the NCAA March Madness tournament.