Why The 2016 Olympics Are Bad News For US Employers

The 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil are a time of excitement for sports fans around the world, but they’re also a multibillion-dollar drain for U.S. employers, according to research by Captivate Office Pulse.

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A survey

That estimate dwarfs the loss in productivity generated by the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, which cost employees about $1 billion. The NCAA basketball tournament – another notorious sports-related drain on office productivity – cost employers an estimated $4 billion last March. Of the employees who plan to watch the Olympics during work hours, 30% said they’ll follow coverage in secret, while 23% of workers said their offices allowed them to openly watch.

Olympics fever will also ensnare some executives – 51% of the c-level executives survey said they would dedicate at least one to two hours to the happenings in Rio. In addition, 35% said concerns about the Zika virus would be the biggest news story to come out of the 2016 Olympics, with 52% stating that the games should have been cancelled to avoid an outbreak.

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