More companies ban cell phones at work
Those jingling ring tones are the No. 1 pet peeve for many office workers, newspaper says.

NEW YORK ( - The use of cell phones at work is being limited by many companies as more workers object to the noisy beeps and ring tones from personal calls at work, a newspaper reported Tuesday.

USA Today reported that 30 percent of employees cited cell phones ringing at work as their No. 1 pet peeve at the office.

The report, quoting a survey by Ranstad USA, a staffing company, and the Society for Human Resource Management, said that more than a third of companies contacted have put in place policies to address the issue.

The biggest reason for the limits include the noise and distraction, the newspaper said. Many workers have complained that some people seem to require surgical removal of cell phones in order to put them down.

More than half of workers surveyed said they get impatient or angry when a coworker stops a conversation because of an incoming wireless call, according to a Sprint survey cited in the article.

An employment lawyer in Dallas, Audrey Mross, was quoted as saying that more employers are expected to ban or limit cell phones as more workers get fancier models with the ability to take pictures or watch video clips, which could hurt productivity.

Lack of productivity and annoyance aren't the only reasons for a cell phone ban, according to the article. Safety is also a factor. In the article, Mross explained that employers may be liable in an accident even if an employee is using his or her own phone and doing business outside normal working hours.

Meanwhile, there's also been a move to ban cell phones in New York City public schools, Reuters reported. The news agency said Detroit and Philadelphia have barred cell phones from schools, while Los Angeles, Boston, Chicago and Las Vegas allow them in the schools but prohibit their use during classes.


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