Tens of thousands of people are joining social networks every day and many people tend to join almost all networks they come to know of. Social networking has become a part of their life and it has become an unavoidable activity. Social media helps people keep in touch with others and geographical distance can no longer be a barrier for communication. They can get real-time information and be updated on what their family and friends are up to.
This gives them some kind of satisfaction that is needed to perform their routine tasks peacefully. When they are not able to log in to social network accounts, they get desperate. Therefore, it has become necessary for organizations to let their employees engage in social networking in order to help them focus on their work related tasks.
This is being discussed in most of the meetings held for HR professionals and they have found positive results when they allow their employees to use social media at work. This might not sound healthy to many organizations because it diverts employees’ mind and tempts them to spend a long time on social media. Often, organizations face problems like this, but the fact is that letting employees engage in social networking helps them focus more on work and improves their creativity. Let’s consider the scenarios organizations face when they permit the use of social media at workplace and the solutions to the issues.
Too much indulgence and decreased productivity:
This is the scenario that almost all organizations face. This is something unavoidable because employees tend to stay on social media for a long time and fail to perform the tasks assigned to them. On the other hand, organizations can’t ban the use of social network because the benefits outweigh the disadvantages. Neither can they overlook the influence of overuse of social media on employee performance. Social media has to be a tool which aids in the boosting of job satisfaction. When employees use it too much, they are satisfied but the organization is not.
There are many solutions to this issue, organizations can adopt those which will suit their needs. Before letting their employees use social media at workplace, they need to form concrete policies regarding the use. The policies formed thus should be communicated to the employees in a clear manner and the employees have to be reminded of the policies regularly. Some organizations monitor the social media activities of employees. This is good, but too much monitoring will lead to conflicts and so this should happen at the optimal level and only by a team of members who have received formal training on the permissible limits of social media activity.
Disclosure of confidential information:
There are high chances of this happening to any organization that lets their employees access social media. However, banning the use of social media can’t rule out the problem completely, too. Often, this happens due to grudges or dissatisfaction.
Confidential information should be made accessible only to those whose social media activities are monitored closely. There should be policies made for this area, too and the employees should be aware that they are being monitored. This will help them avoid disclosing confidential information.
Making offensive remarks on other employees or the company:
This could be sometimes too damaging and so it has to be dealt with care. There might be some employees who take their personal grudges to social media and their comments overflowing with bitter emotions might affect the image of your organization.
Always try to find out the issues that employees are facing at the workplace and try to counsel them. You can also make strict policies regarding this and implement those in order to prevent such things from happening.
There are no one-size-fits-all policies which organizations can adopt. It depends on the size and the privilege levels organizations are willing to give the employees. Making policies and communicating them clearly to the employees has been the best tried and tested way to prevent issues that arise due to the use of social media at workplace.