Has your organisation considered drawing up a social media policy?
Social media use has increased a lot in a short space of time: more than half of all staff now visit social media sites while at work using either a computer or mobile phone. To help employers deal with the incredible growth of sites like Twitter and Facebook, Acas has produced a Social networking guide, which provides advice on developing a policy for Social Media in the workplace. There’s also guidance on the site for recruiters – highlighting the key benefits and some of the potential pitfalls of using Social Media in recruiting new employees.
From an HR perspective, the rise of social media brings with it enormous potential. LinkedIn’s continued success and its recently introduced ‘Apply with LinkedIn’ function bring candidates and their potential employers much closer, saving time and expense for both. There could even be a day in the future when a candidate’s LinkedIn profile becomes a more common sight than a printed (or emailed) CV.
The social media explosion is also having an effect in areas such as learning and development, with blogs, Twitter and Facebook all providing a platform for sharing and accessing information. Social media is a world where news, opinion facts, and speculation travel fast. This makes it ideal for knowledge sharing, and keeping employees informed of all the latest news within an organisation. There’s also great potential for enhancing business areas such as customer service and marketing, which could improve productivity levels and profitability.
Could social media help your staff work more effectively? The answer to that is yes, but only in the right context. Concerns about time and productivity being lost to social networking appear to be well-founded according to recent reports – although recent research suggests that an outright ban could prove counterproductive.
We’d love to hear about your experiences of social media and business – does your organisation recruit using LinkedIn or do you use more traditional ways of selecting staff? Do your employees use social media freely during working hours, or is its use only permitted during breaks?