Allowing employees to take small smartphone breaks could actually be beneficial rather than a disruption for business.
Sooyeol Kim, through a study of 72 full-time workers from various industries, discovered that employees only spend an average of 22 minutes out of an eight-hour workday playing on their smartphones.
The study found that employees who take smartphone breaks throughout the day are happier at the end of the workday and a smartphone microbreak can be beneficial for both the employee and the organization.
To study smartphone usage, the researchers developed an application that the 72 study participants installed on their smartphones and the app privately and securely measured the employees' smartphone usage during work hours.
The app also divided the employees' smartphone usage into categories such as entertainment, which included games such as "Angry Birds" or "Candy Crush," or social media, which included Facebook and Twitter.
According to the researchers, smartphone microbreaks are similar to other microbreaks throughout the workday: chatting with coworkers, walking around the hallway or getting a cup of coffee and such breaks are important because they can help employees cope with the demands of the workplace.