35% of Senior Execs Play Casual Videogames at Work

September 5, 2007

This article is included in these additional categories:

Household Income | Media & Entertainment | Videogames | Women

Among white-collar workers surveyed, nearly a quarter (24%) said they play casual videogames “at work” – with fully 35% of CEOs, CFOs and other senior executives saying they play at work – according to a PopCap Games survey targeting white-collar workers.

With conservative estimates pegging the casual games market at over 200 million people, the representative sample suggests that as many as 80 million white-collar workers play casual games, PopCap said.

The white-collar casual gamer demo, according to the survey:

  • 65% said they earn $50,000 or more in annual income (compared with 53% of casual game players overall); 22% said they earned $100,000 or more per year.
  • 58% said they had a college degree (compared with 46% of casual gamers overall).
  • 91% of white-collar gamers are age 30 or older, 68% are 40 or older, and 39% are 50 or older.

The following are among the key findings of the study:

All white-collar workers

Of the 2,842 white-collar workers surveyed, 98% said they played casual games at home and 24% said they played during work hours.

Of those who said they played during work hours:

  • 14% admitted they had played casual games during business meetings or conference calls, with two thirds (65%) of those saying they did so at least once a month.
  • 61% said they play during lunch or other official break periods.
  • 52% said they play “during my work day, when I need a short break.”
  • 19% said they play “at the end of my work day, to unwind.”
  • 11% said they play “at the beginning of my work day before I get started.”

Those who said they played during work hours said they do so with considerable frequency:

  • 53% said they play at work at least once a day.
  • 79% said they play at work several times a week or more.
  • 84% said they play casual games at work for 15-60 minutes each day, on average.
  • 11% said they played casual games at work for an hour or more each day.

As to the effects of playing casual games at work, those who do so acknowledged the following effects after taking a short game break at work:

  • 84% said they felt “more relaxed and less stressed out.”
  • 52% said they felt more confident, more energetic, more productive and/or more mentally focused.

Senior Executives

Among white-collar gamers who participated in the survey, 9% were identified as “senior executives” – CEOs, CFOs, presidents and other C-level executives – and they indicated a considerably higher frequency of play, including playing at work:

  • 35% of senior executives said they play casual games at work, vs. 23% of other white-collar gamers.
  • 70% said they play “during work, when I need a short break,” vs. 49% of other white-collar gamers.
  • 61% said they play once a day or more frequently during each work day, vs. 51% of other white-collar gamers.
  • 71% said their typical game-play session at work lasts 15 minutes or longer, vs. 62% of other white-collar gamers.

Other findings

  • Among all white-collar gamers (not just those who play at work), when asked to choose the single most important reason for playing casual games, 72% chose a reason related to improving their mental state, while 24% chose “entertainment.”
  • Nearly half (48%) of respondents who said they play casual games at work indicated that they supervise other coworkers.
  • Of those in supervisory roles, 79% said they encouraged their staff to take brief mental breaks during the workday, and 29% said that more than half of the employees who reported to them played casual games during the workday.
  • Fully 21% of all survey respondents said that at least some of their casual game playing occurs on their mobile device (cell phone, BlackBerry, Pocket PC, PDA, etc.).
  • Of those who said they played on a mobile device, a whopping 68% said they had downloaded and purchased a game for their mobile device – roughly six times greater than the number for consumers overall.
  • Of all white-collar workers who said they play casual games (not just those who play at work), 87% have been playing casual games for three years or more, and 58% have been playing for six years or more.
  • In addition, 93% play at least once a week, 85% play twice a week or more, and 46% play every day.
  • Three quarters (75%) said their casual gaming activities consume three or more hours of time per week.

About the study: This international research was conducted by Information Solutions Group (ISG) exclusively for PopCap Games. The results are based on online surveys completed by 2,842 respondents randomly selected between June 15 and June 29, 2007. The audience consisted of 1,899 United States and 943 international PopCap.com website visitors; 772 were men and 2,069 were women. The breakout of titles/roles among 2,842 white-collar workers surveyed was as follows:

  • 29% Professionals (accountants, architects, doctors, etc.)
  • 24% Clerical/Support Staff (administrative, secretarial, clerical, etc.)
  • 17% Middle Management (managers, directors, etc.)
  • 14% Technical Staff (IT, programming, support etc.)
  • 9% Executive/Senior Management (CEOs, CFOs, CIOs, Presidents, etc.)
  • 7% Other Management/Sales

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