March Madness results in lower work productivity and lost money

posted by Ashley King - 

Plan on watch the Razorbacks at work this Friday at 12:30pm? Or any of the tournament while working, for that matter. 

Estimates vary on how Americans participate in March Madness pools each year. The American Gaming Association says about 40 million people will fill out more than 70 million NCAA Tournament brackets, with an average wager of $29 per bracket.

Based on the country’s average hourly wage of $25.35, the outplacement consultancy firm estimates employers will lose $1.3 billion in pay to slacking employees per hour of distraction. Between time spent filling out brackets and watching tournament games live, the total loss of productivity could approach $4 billion.

Easy access to live streams has made it that much easier for workers to sneak a peek at the action during office hours. For example, “March Madness Live.


$1.9 Billion – Hourly losses by companies due to unproductive workers during March Madness. 

$9 Billion – Estimated amount wagered on the 2015 NCAA tournament ($7 billion illegally). 

81% – Of HR professionals say their organizations don’t have policies addressing office pools. 

2X – Easier to win back-to-back Mega Millions lotteries than it is to fill out a perfect bracket. 

17.5 Million – Barrels of American beer produced each March, compared to an average of 14M in all other months.

Ashley King

Ashley King

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