Why CIOs Aren’t Blocking Holiday Shopping This Year

Proliferation of devices makes shopping on the job inevitable.

Most government employees spend at least 40 hours at the office each week. If you add time spent commuting, socializing with friends and family and sleeping, when is there free time for holiday shopping?

There isn’t. At least that is what one-third of workers surveyed last year said when they were asked whether they shopped online for holiday gifts while at work. In the past, CIOs have been adamant about preventing this from happening, but as the popularity of online shopping increases, many in management have realized that banning it simply isn’t possible.

Safe shopping that is monitored for excessive use is the right choice for 55 percent of CIOs interviewed by Robert Half Technology. In 2011, the same survey found that 60 percent of CIOs were blocking online shopping entirely, compared with just 33 percent this year. Using computers, tablets and smartphones for personal tasks is not frowned upon as much as it once was, but there are parameters. Robert Half Technology offers some guidelines for safe shopping this year:

  1. Follow the rules. Know your company's policy, including sites or hours to avoid, before searching for deals online.

  2. Limit surfing. A liberal policy is no excuse to spend the day filling your online shopping cart. Do your browsing out of the office so you can limit your at-work activity to quick transactions.

  3. Be smart about using your smartphone. Mobile devices may allow you to get around a strict online-shopping policy, but always put work first.

  4. Score some deals after work. No online promotion is worth putting your career at risk. If you have projects that require immediate attention, save holiday shopping for your off-hours.

  5. Protect your personal information. If a holiday offer looks too good to be true, it probably is. Avoid clicking on links or visiting sites that could infect your company's network with viruses or malware.

Read more here.

What is your agency’s policy? Let us know in the Comments section below.

<p>Image courtesy of Danilo Rizzuti / <a href="http://www.freedigitalphotos.net" target="_blank">FreeDigitalPhotos.net</a></p>
Nov 26 2012