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March Madness oneDuring the NCAA basketball tournament, companies that allow employees to celebrate March Madness at work may emerge as the real winners, a new OfficeTeam survey suggests.

Nearly one-third (32%) of senior managers interviewed said activities tied to the college basketball playoffs boost employee morale, and more than one-quarter (27%) felt March Madness has a positive impact on worker productivity. These results are up from 20% and 16%, respectively, in a similar survey conducted in 2013.

View an infographic of the research results on how March Madness activities impact employee morale and productivity.

“Many companies acknowledge the appeal of sporting events like March Madness and organize friendly contests or invite workers to watch games together,” said Robert Hosking, executive director of OfficeTeam. “Group activities like this can boost employee morale as workers have fun discussing game scores or their favorite schools.”

OfficeTeam offers three tips to help workers caught up in March Madness also stay caught up with work:

  1. Don’t make a rookie mistake. Before participating in playoff-related activities in the office, make sure you’re not running afoul of company policies. Find out what’s acceptable and what’s not regarding issues such as breaks, personal Internet use and workspace decorations.
  2. Watch the clock. If your employer allows it, take quick breaks to chat with coworkers about tournament updates, but don’t March Madness twolet conversations distract you from your job. If you’re a March Madness fanatic, consider requesting time off to watch the playoffs.
  3. Check the playbook. Interested in taking a day off to enjoy the game? Discuss it with your boss in advance. This allows your manager to keep things on track by reassigning projects or bringing in temporary professionals, if necessary.

OfficeTeam is the nation’s leading staffing service specializing in the temporary placement of highly skilled office and administrative support professionals. More information, including online job search services and the OfficeTeam Take Note blog (blog.officeteam.com), can be found at officeteam.com