Research Reveals Holiday E-Mail Addicts

A Gartner survey shows that 42 percent of users check their business e-mail while on vacation, 23 percent check e-mail on the weekends.

On weekdays, 53 percent of business users check e-mail six or more times a day, while 34 percent of users check e-mail constantly throughout the day. On average, business users spend 49 minutes per day managing e-mail accounts. Gartner analysts warn that the "always on" syndrome for business users is redefining not only the workday, but also family weekends and vacations.

Maurene Caplan Grey, Gartner senior research analyst, commented on the phenomenon: "Business use of cell phones, instant messaging and e-mail has crept into our lives on a 24 by 7 basis. The connected vacationer is always on the alert for business interruptions. For better or for worse, 42 percent of us go online to look for business e-mails during vacation."

The survey also provided evidence that business users receive an average of 22 e-mails per day. Results suggested that only 27 percent of these e-mails require immediate attention and 34 percent are occupational spam (a Gartner term denoting unnecessary e-mails from co-workers).

"E-mail has become the corporate security blanket of this decade," continued Ms. Grey. "If executives don't get their 22 e-mails per day, they actually miss them and begin to feel out of the loop. We've become a country that thrives on being connected. The thought of communication happening without our knowledge keeps us tethered to the workplace," concluded Ms. Grey.

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