FC Roper Starch Survey: The Web

Results from the Fast Company-Roper Starch Survey on the Web.

Here is a question-by-question sampling of the results of the latest Fast Company-Roper Starch Worldwide online survey. (Note: Because of rounding, percentages for some questions do not add up to 100.)

During a typical day, about how much time do you spend using the Internet (not including email) for work purposes?

None at all: 23%
1 to 30 minutes: 32%
31 to 59 minutes: 15%
1 to 2 hours: 16%
3 to 5 hours: 8%
6 to 10 hours: 3%
11 hours or more: 2%

During a typical day, about how much time do you spend using the Internet (not including email) for personal reasons?

None at all: 2%
1 to 30 minutes: 18%
31 to 59 minutes: 22%
1 to 2 hours: 36%
3 to 5 hours: 15%
6 to 10 hours: 4%
11 hours or more: 4%

In a typical day, how important is each of the following to helping you do your work? (Percentages indicate how many people said "very important" or "somewhat important.")

Conversations on the telephone: 78%
Voice-mail messages on the telephone: 59%
Email messages by computer: 64%
Face-to-face meetings : 73%
Access to the Web: 56%
Closing the door and taking time to think: 57%

How important is each of the following to helping you feel that you're in the loop at work? (Percentages indicate how many people said "very important" or "somewhat important.")

Conversations on the telephone: 78%
Voice-mail messages on the telephone: 57%
Email messages by computer: 65%
Face-to-face meetings: 79%
Access to the Web: 49%

Which of the following statements about communicating by email do you agree with? (Percentages indicate how many people said that they "agree" with each statement.)

"Email is basically no different from talking by phone": 25%
"Email allows me to avoid unwanted conversations": 78%
"Email gives me more control over when and how I communicate": 88%
"Email is a waste of time": 2%
"Email is more effective than meeting face-to-face": 20%
"I feel more pressure to reply to phone messages than to emails": 47%
"I spend more time on email than I should": 21%

How much do you agree with each of the following statements about using the Internet at work? (Percentages indicate how many people said that they "agree completely" or "agree somewhat" with each statement.)

"The Internet sounds great, but it doesn't help me in practice": 31%
"Using the Internet makes me more efficient": 62%
"Using the Internet just adds more work to my day": 13%
"Using the Internet is critical to my success" : 47%
"Much of the time spent on the Internet at work is really just playtime": 30%

Thinking about the Internet, please rate whether each one of the following is more of a reality or more of a myth.

"The Internet makes it easier for people to communicate"

Reality: 94%
Myth: 6%

"The Internet lets people get information quickly"

Reality: 96%
Myth: 4%

"The Internet empowers consumers"

Reality: 82%
Myth: 18%

"The Internet is replacing face-to-face interaction"

Reality: 48%
Myth: 52%

"The Internet makes shopping easier and more enjoyable"

Reality : 67%
Myth: 33%

"The Internet tears down many barriers to starting a business"

Reality: 70%
Myth: 30%

"The Internet will fundamentally change the way we work"

Reality: 85%
Myth: 15%

"The Internet will fundamentally change the way we live"

Reality: 85%
Myth: 15%

For each of the following pairs of options, choose the one that you'd rather have.

One hour to watch TV: 25%
One hour to explore the Web: 75%

Internet access at home: 59%
Cable-television access at home: 41%

Internet access in every room of your home: 52%
Satellite-TV access in every room of your home: 48%

The latest high-tech home-entertainment system: 23%
The latest high-tech personal-computer system: 77%

One hour of shopping in a mall: 52%
One hour of shopping on the Internet: 48%

Thinking about your expectations for the Internet over the next five years, please rate the likelihood of each of the following possibilities. (Percentages indicate how many people said each possibility is "very likely" or "somewhat likely.")

"It will improve and change to a point where we won't recognize it" : 68%
"It will never live up to its hype": 22%
"It will be about the same, but we'll be better at using it": 70%
"We'll do most of our work on the Internet": 52%
"We'll do most of our business on the Internet": 62%
"We'll do most of our shopping on the Internet": 59%

For each of the following pairs of options, choose the one that will be more essential to business success five years from now.

Skill at using the Internet: 28%
Social skills: 72%
Skill at using the Internet: 33%
An advanced degree: 67%
Skill at using the Internet: 28%
Having good business contacts: 72%
Skill at using the Internet: 36%
Years of work experience: 64%
Skill at using the Internet: 33%
Passion for your work: 67%

How much time do you typically spend doing each of the following activities online? (Percentages indicate how many people selected "a lot" or "some" as their response.)

Purchasing groceries: 4%
Purchasing clothes: 18%
Purchasing cars: 12%
Investing in stocks or mutual funds: 29%
Purchasing books: 34%
Purchasing airline tickets: 33%
Banking or paying bills: 28%
Visiting chat rooms: 29%
Viewing pornography: 14%
Doing research: 93%
Looking through classified ads: 39%
Reading about current events: 79%
Sending and reading email: 95%

Next, think about what you expect your level of online activity to be five years from now. Please indicate whether you expect to do more, less, or about the same of each activity -- or whether the activity is one that you will never do online.

Purchasing groceries

More: 24%
Same: 26%
Less: 6%
Never: 44%

Purchasing clothes

More: 35%
Same: 36%
Less: 6%
Never: 24%

Purchasing cars

More: 26%
Same: 34%
Less: 7%
Never: 34%

Investing in stocks or mutual funds

More: 56%
Same: 25%
Less: 3%
Never: 16%

Purchasing books

More: 44%
Same: 39%
Less: 5%
Never: 12%

Purchasing airline tickets

More: 53%
Same: 32%
Less: 4%
Never: 11%

Banking or paying bills

More: 64%
Same: 21%
Less: 3%
Never: 12%

Visiting chat rooms

More: 18%
Same: 44%
Less: 12%
Never: 26%

Viewing pornography

More: 5%
Same: 23%
Less: 12%
Never: 60%

Doing research

More: 75%
Same: 24%
Less: 1%
Never: 1%

Looking through classified ads

More: 43%
Same: 39%
Less: 5%
Never: 13%

Reading about current events

More: 64%
Same: 34%
Less: 1%
Never: 1%

Sending and reading email

More: 72%
Same: 27%
Less: 1%
Never: 1%

Please indicate whether you think that doing each of the following activities online is better, worse, or about the same as doing it in the traditional way -- or whether you will never do it online.

Purchasing groceries

Better: 12%
Same: 22%
Worse: 23%
Never : 44%

Purchasing clothes

Better: 17%
Same: 30%
Worse: 25%
Never: 28%

Purchasing cars

Better: 24%
Same: 27%
Worse: 17%
Never: 32%

Investing in stocks or mutual funds

Better: 49%
Same: 28%
Worse: 6%
Never: 17%

Purchasing books

Better: 38%
Same: 39%
Worse: 12%
Never: 12%

Purchasing airline tickets

Better: 57%
Same: 28%
Worse: 4%
Never: 12%

Banking or paying bills

Better: 54%
Same: 22%
Worse: 7%
Never: 17%

Viewing pornography

Better: 14%
Same: 20%
Worse: 6%
Never: 60%

Doing research

Better: 87%
Same: 10%
Worse: 2%
Never: 1%

Looking through classified ads

Better: 46%
Same: 35%
Worse: 7%
Never: 12%

Reading about current events

Better: 61%
Same: 31%
Worse: 8%
Never: 1%

Sending and reading mail

Better: 86%
Same: 12%
Worse: 2%
Never: 1%

Please read the following scenarios, and then give your opinion.

"Five years from now, retail businesses will focus all of their resources on state-of-the-art Web sites and merchandise-distribution systems. Retail outlets will have become relics of the past." Do you think that this scenario is ...

Already true: 4%
Certain to come true within five years: 8%
Likely to come true within five years: 17%
Possible, but not likely to come true within five years: 48%
Impossible: It will not come true within five years: 24%

If the above statement comes true, do you feel that the result would be ...

Positive: 41%
Negative: 60%

"Five years from now, there will be a new addiction. There will be self-help books and support groups for people who feel they must be connected to the Internet 24 hours a day."

Do you think that this scenario is ...

Already true: 31%
Certain to come true within five years: 17%
Likely to come true within five years: 28%
Possible, but not likely to come true within five years: 21%
Impossible: It will not come true within five years: 4%

Here's another scenario: "Pat has a home office and is set up for telecommuting. Every day, after breakfast, Pat goes into the home office and closes the door. Pat keeps in visual contact with coworkers and attends videoconferences by using a camera on top of the computer. On days when Pat wants to stay in pajamas, the video camera is turned off. Along with communicating by email, fax, and telephone, Pat shares electronic documents and work calendars through a company intranet. The family has set rules about Pat's workdays: When the home-office door is closed, nobody can even knock on it except at lunchtime. But Pat can still often hear the kids playing and the dog barking at the mail carrier."

How soon do you think that it will be possible to have a worklife like Pat's?

It's already possible: 70%
It will be possible within 5 years: 17%
It will be possible within 10 years: 9%
It will be possible within 20 years or more: 2%
It will never be possible: 2%

How much does a work life like Pat's appeal to you?

A lot: 32%
Some: 41%
Not much: 19%
Not at all: 8%

Please finish the following sentence: "I would spend a lot more time on the Net if ..."

"It were dramatically easier to use": 14%
"Security and privacy were guaranteed": 46%
"It allowed me to do more things that I couldn't do otherwise": 40%

Please finish the following sentence: "I would spend a lot more money on buying stuff via the Net if ..."

"Web sites were easier to navigate": 7%
"Prices were lower": 29%
"The selection of goods were bigger": 7%
"There were more information on products and services": 13%
"Security and privacy were guaranteed": 32%
"There were explicit standards for ethical commerce":13%

This poll was designed by Roper Starch Worldwide Inc., and the data was collected by Digital Marketing Services Inc. using America Online's subscriber base. A sample of 1,035 employed, college-educated visitors to AOL's Opinion Place was randomly selected, and respondents were interviewed from July 7, 1999 to July 9, 1999. Results have been weighted to account for the average age and gender of the online population.

Visit Roper Starch Worldwide on the Web (http://www.roper.com).

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