As an employer do you have a clear company policy on Social Media?
As an employee are you aware of the consequences of using your Social Media platforms during work time? Does your employer have a Social Media policy?
With the rise and rise of Social Media it has never been more important for Employers to have a clear policy in place.
Once again Joy Arkley of the HR Dept West Wales grasps the mettle of what is current in the workplace:-
Recent research by ACAS found just over half of all workers (55%) now use social media sites at work, either on computers or mobile phones, costing British firms billions of pounds a year in lost productivity.
Employees are spending time on personal profiles and pages when they should be working.
What is of deeper concern however is when employees use social media platforms to speak negatively of their place of work or worse, their boss!
Another study conducted showed almost 40% of British employees criticize their ‘workplace’ on social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter.
In addition, one in five admitted slandering their bosses on them.
There have been some high profile cases of employees being dismissed for bringing the company into disrepute because of comments either about work or colleagues on these social media platforms.
Mrs Whitham, for example fell foul for inappropriate comments about colleagues made on Facebook. While Mrs Whitham attempted to keep this little testimonial private, unfortunately two of her colleagues (also friends) reported the comments to their Line Manager. As it turns out however, the employment tribunal decided Mrs Whitham was unfairly dismissed, deeming the comments ‘relatively mild’. Adding to this; the company did not have a clear social media policy for employees, no doubt the company could have handled the situation better. Mrs Whitham was offered a demotion, but unsurprisingly declined. However not only have there been cases of employees misbehaving, employers themselves have also landed in hot water when running ‘social media background checks’ whilst recruiting. Even if a candidate has a glowing CV and interview, an employer is able to gain a true insight through a sneaky peek at their social media profile.
If employers intend to run web checks, they must warn candidates of this to give them a chance to clean their profile up.
Joy has a thorough and robust understanding of Human Resources and offers a Free HR Audit. If the above article has rung alarm bells and you would like advice on the correct policy documentation then call Joy now on 01239 639 128
Preventing People Problems
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