Three quarters of British IT professionals say they feel no guilt about carrying out personal tasks during the working day, according to a new survey.

According to the IT Job Board half of IT workers make personal phone calls at work and 61 per cent send non-work emails, yet just one-quarter say they feel it is wrong for them to do so.

Of those questioned, 17 per cent said they use work time to carry out such tasks because they do not have enough to do, while almost nine per cent said it was because they are underpaid for the amount of work they carry out.

The survey also studied the responses of IT professionals in other countries and found both striking similarities and large differences in attitudes towards carrying out private tasks at work.

Research carried out by the Learning and Skills Council in August revealed that UK employees waste around 40 days per year gossiping, waiting on colleagues, being kept on hold on the phone and sitting in traffic jams.