Managing Social Media Use in the Workplace

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The businesses’ use of social media has increased significantly in recent times. The use of social media can be a great asset for businesses, if used in the right way. Social media can be act as a great tool for businesses to market its products and services, extend its loyal brand followers and ultimately acquire new customers.
social media

Using Social Media in the workplace is also a great tool to connect with more people and to make long-lasting professional relationships in both a personal and professional sense. This is only possible when it is managed well and without it adversely affecting employees’ productivity.

Social media has already become a matter of great concern for many employers, with incidents involving allegations of defamation, cyber bullying, and invasion of privacy. Studies have also proved that employees who are overly active on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram do not demonstrate optimal productivity. This is one of the aspects of the use of social media at work which causes significant unease to employers.

Here is some guidance for businesses on how to manage Social Media effectively in the workplace.

Set expectations

Does your business allow the usage of social media during working hours? Many organisations block access to certain social media websites during working hours and have very strict guidelines. Ask your IT professionals for advice if you are considering blocking certain websites during working hours. You should bear in mind that by blocking all access to social media websites does not necessarily mean more productivity from your staff.

Keep staff involved

By keeping staff involved in your social media strategy, you can also take their input on what they feel is fair rules on the use of social media in the workplace. This way, you are engaging with your employees and encouraging them to come up with ideas on how best to implement a coherent social media strategy without it adversely affecting employees’ productivity.

Prepare a Social Media Policy

Having set out the boundaries and expectations, you should probably consider putting this in a policy document. Consult with HR professionals and prepare a comprehensive document containing what you expect from to employees’ Social Media use in the workplace. Your policy should specify the details and include times, websites and content that is permitted during working hours. This sets appropriate boundaries that everyone in the business is aware of and agrees to.

Remember that company policies are only effective if properly enforced. Your HR team should remind employees of their obligations on Social Media in the workplace, keeping them up to date with any changes to this policy as it and the world of Social Media progresses. Your employees should also in turn understand and agree to these policies. Your policy document should also specify the consequences of breaching the implemented policies, such as by way of any disciplinary action.

Choose a designated person

It is advisable for any business, irrespective of the size of the operation to have one named employee as the designated person to review and approve content on Social Media. It will be the responsibility of the designated person to review all content posted across different social media channels to ensure consistency of branding as well as safeguarding against inappropriate content being posted.

This is a particularly significant activity if your business uses an automated tool for posting content on Social Media. This will ensure the company is associated with the appropriate, consistent and quality content at all times across all channels. If you are engaged in social media, then it is equally important to be responsive to comments and feedbacks placed on those channels. It could be a good idea if that same person is also responsible for replying to comments and feedback from the community.

By Jahed Morad at Gulbekian Andonian Solicitors

 

Jahed is an experienced lawyer whose practice comprises of immigration, employment, and commercial law. Jahed is also an avid writer who enjoys sharing insights and tactical know-how relating to his areas of expertise.

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