The NCAA basketball tournament is in full swing, and that means people are checking their brackets, cheering on their favorite teams and hoping their schools don’t choke at the end of a Cinderella season. However, the March tournament frenzy also translates to a lot of wasted time at work, with people glued to streaming games on their computers, tablets or smart phones. This eats up a lot of time, and a lot of bandwidth, and companies are beginning to stand up to the madness.
Modis recently polled 500 employed IT Professionals about their IT departments’ policies and actions towards streaming video, particularly around the college basketball postseason. This telephone survey was conducted by Braun Research on behalf of Modis, among a nationally representative sample of 500 IT Professionals. The survey was fielded between February 8 – 17, 2012. Results have a margin of error of +/- 4.4% at the 95% confidence level.
The NCAA Basketball Tournament survey brought about many key findings regarding the way the playoffs impacts IT, streaming content, online activity and technology companies including:
NCAA basketball playoffs negatively impact IT networks – 2 in 5 (42 percent) IT professionals say the playoffs have impacted their network, with 37 percent reporting it has slowed down and 34 percent reporting it has shut down.
IT departments take action against streaming the NCAA basketball tournament– Nearly two-thirds (65 percent) of IT professionals say their department takes some sort of action to block, throttle, or ban streaming non-work content. Of those who take action, 64 percent block streaming content, 64 percent throttle/slow down streaming content, and 62 percent have a company policy banning streaming non-work content.
The March basketball playoffs are stressful for IT professionals – Nearly a third (29 percent) of IT professionals say that preparation, execution and consideration for postseason college hoops adds stress to their IT work life.
The biggest reason IT departments block streaming content is to preserve networks – While IT departments block streaming content primarily to maintain a stable office IT network, (82 percent), a majority (71 percent) also do it to remove any distractions in the workplace. Three in four (75 percent) IT professionals say it should be forbidden for employees to watch sporting events like the NCAA basketball tournament during the workday.
Other major online events this year will post a network threat – IT professionals think other 2012 events, such as Cyber Monday/holiday shopping (43 percent), usage of social media sites (42 percent), and tennis finals (37 percent), will also affect their network.
Majority of employees complain to IT about content-streaming policies – While the majority of IT professionals (54 percent) either “often” or “sometimes” receive verbal or e-mail feedback from employees complaining about their content-streaming or the tournament viewing policies, almost three-quarters (71 percent) of them believe employees find their company’s content-streaming policy to be fair.
Even with 68 teams in play, college basketball’s biggest competition may be coming from IT departments looking to keep the madness out of the office. Check out some more results from the survey in these articles from news outlets throughout the country.
USATODAY.com: March Madness in the office: Work comes in second