Sep 26, 2016

    Malaysia firms say no to Pokemon Go at work


    IT HAS fired up gamers worldwide. But now, Pokemon Go has led to some people in Malaysia being fired.

    Six employers have dismissed workers for playing the popular location-based game while at work, reveals a survey by the Malaysian Employers Federation (MEF).

    MEF executive director Shamsuddin Bardan says the poll on the impact of the game involved 150 employers in various sectors.

    Preliminary findings show that the six companies fired workers who "indulged too much in the game", he said.

    Other actions taken by employers included advising employees against playing the game during working hours, issuing warning letters and suspending them from work without pay.

    Employers were shown to be taking a strong stance against the game, with 95 per cent saying they do not allow employees to access the app at work at all.

    "Some 96 per cent also prohibit workers from using the company e-mail address to sign up for the game," said Mr Shamsuddin.

    The survey found that 25 per cent of bosses have caught workers playing Pokemon Go.

    "Some 11 per cent of employers also claim that their workers are taking a longer lunch break because of the game," he said.

    Half of the poll participants were from the manufacturing sector while the rest were from a mix of other industries.

    However, about 19 per cent of employers surveyed - including those in the food and beverage industry - found that the game is good for business.

    Event director and Pokemon Go enthusiast Syafiq Nizar Radzi said playing the game during working hours is "extremely unprofessional".

    "Employers should be professional too and strict warnings should been given to the errant worker. But if they refuse to adapt to company policy after that, then a dismissal sounds fair," he added.

    A 31-year-old company executive who wanted to be known only as Jean says companies have the right to ban employees from playing the game while at work.

    "Some companies have even banned their workers from going on Facebook," she pointed out.