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Goofing off online increases productivity at work

Caught red handed...being productive. CBS

(CBS) - As if we need another reason to goof off at work. Researchers in Singapore claim that browsing the Internet boosts productivity. Yippee! (Is my boss reading this?)

The Wall Street Journal reports that Don J.Q. Chen and Vivien K.G Lim of the National University of Singapore released a study called "Impact of Cyberloafing on Psychological Engagement" last week at the annual meeting of the Academy of Management.

In the study, 96 students split up into three groups performed a workday that consisted of 20 minutes of work, a 10-minute break and 10 minutes of work.

Here's how the three groups were split: the first was a control, the second could do anything they wanted aside from using the Internet and the third could use the Internet.

The Internet users were more productive and effective at the tasks following their 10-minute break.

In a statement given to the Wall Street Journal, Dr. Lim said people "usually choose to visit only the sites that they like - it's like going for a coffee or snack break. Breaks of such nature are pleasurable, rejuvenating the Web surfer."

This isn't the first study on Internet productivity.

In 2009 CNET reported a study done at the University of Melbourne "found that people who engage in "Workplace Internet Leisure Browsing" (WILB) are more productive than those who don't. Workers who "surf the Internet for fun at work - within a reasonable limit of less than 20 percent of their total time in the office - are more productive by about 9 percent."

The final verdict sounds like every cliché regarding any of our vices: moderate. Go ahead and goof off (for less than 20 percent of your day)!

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