Survey Reveals How Many Employees Watch Sports At Work — And How They Do It

Written By Staff on June 22, 2021
sports at work

If you’re a sports fan, it can be tempting to check the score of a big game while you’re at work. And it’s even more tempting to watch sports at work if it’s a game you have money on.

But how many of us admit to watching highlights or even an entire game while we’re at work? We were curious to find out the relationship employees have with sports while they’re on the clock, so we surveyed sports fans across the country to find out.

Sports on the Clock

If you’ve checked a sports score or even read about sports while on the clock, you’re not alone. According to respondents, 71% admit to doing so while they’re working, and a quarter say they do it every day.

Overall, sports fans use up about 49 minutes of their day to check scores or read up on sports at work. Nearly one in five say they spend an hour or more of company time to get caught up on sports news throughout the day.

sports at work

How Fans Watch Sports at Work

Along with reading about sports, 73% admit to actually watching sports at work. And that number is even higher among remote or hybrid workers at a staggering 86%.

A majority of workers say they use their phone (57%) to watch a game while other fans are catching up on sports right under their coworkers and boss’s noses. In fact, 52% say they’ve checked a score during a work meeting and 53% say they’ve checked a score during a Zoom or Skype call. Let’s just hope they weren’t presenting that day.

Where Employees Watch Sports at Work

Speaking of being sneaky, 61% of sports fans say they’ve gone into a restroom at work just to watch a game or check up on the score. Some other common areas for employees to hide in order to watch sports at work include a car (24%), storage room (22%), under a desk (17%) and even in an empty office or conference room (16%).

sports at work

For the Love of the Game

There are sports fans and then there are diehards. Those that call in sick to watch a game are the latter.

According to respondents, there are quite a few diehards willing to call in sick to either watch a game (49%) or attend a game (48%). Some fanatics have taken things to the next level and called in sick due to being too hungover after watching a game (48%).

sports at work

But with a great reward, there’s always a great risk, which explains why of the 54% of respondents who say they’ve snuck out of work early to catch a game, 65% got caught or reprimanded. However, those fans aren’t alone because more than half say they’ve caught their boss watching sports on the clock.

Getting Caught

Taking a Pay Cut to Watch Sports

If you’re watching sports at work and your boss is watching sports at work, shouldn’t we all be allowed to watch sports at work?

Well, in a perfect world, yes, we should.

In fact, 47% of fans say they would take a pay cut if it meant they could always watch their favorite team play while at work. And if season tickets were offered by their employer, 57% say they would take a pay cut. We’re not sure about you, but season tickets sounds like a pretty good benefits package.

sports at work


We surveyed more than 1,500 sports fans across 40 different industries around the country to ask them about their relationship with sports at work. Among respondents, 63% were male and 37% were female with an average age of 38. Income: under $20,000: 9%; $20,000 – $40,000: 24%; $40,001 – $60,000: 30%; $60,001 – $80,000: 20%; $80,000 – $100,000: 11%; $100,001 and over: 6%.

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