Here’s Why A Social Media Policy Can Benefit Everyone In 2019, a social media policy is essential for any workplace. Whether it’s for contacting new leads or celebrating the everyday successes within the company, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram are platforms which carry an enormous amount of weight and potential behind them. And sometimes, this weight can shift and crash through your company like a bull in a china shop.
What goes from a useful tool, can quickly shift into PR nightmare with one wrong like or one dodgy retweet. So what can you do as a company to make the most of social media and stop your employees from bringing your brand into disrepute? A social media policy is the answer.
A social media policy can be the safety net that your company needs to protect themselves and their employees from damage online. This means keeping it simple, clear, accessible, and a policy that continues to be updated. The goal is to not frustrate your workforce or discourage employees from participating in social media. But, it does need to emphasize some basic conduct so there are no major issues in the future.
There are several issues of importance to any company when it comes to social media policies and use, including productivity, privacy, and host of legal matters. Therefore, organizations of all sizes, across all sectors, should seriously consider developing a formal social media policy.
Emma O’Leary, HR Director at ELAS, explains the necessity of putting an official policy in place for all employees:
“A social media policy should highlight that staff who engage in social networking – even whilst they are off duty and off the premises – must always be mindful of expressing views that go against company values in any way. Should they post anything on their social media which is in any way offensive or controversial, then the reputational damage to all associated can be extensive, particularly when it gets picked up by the national media and becomes front page news.
ELAS recommends that all companies should have a
social media policy in place. Some might even want to consider specialist social media training, particularly if their employees are in the public eye e.g. actors or sporting organisations.”
Social media is one of the fastest evolving tools in recent history, so with updates happening on the daily, it can be difficult to keep a grasp on it. That’s why you do not want to get too niche with your policy. It’s not necessary to pick every social media platform by name, as there are hundreds appearing on app stores and online every year. Instead, concentrate on what you do and do not want your employees promoting online.
This demonstrates why you and your employees have a responsibility to represent your company’s image online in a way that only reflects positively. Social media training is a excellent tool when wanting to inform your team of the do’s and don’ts of social media use inside and outside of the workplace. Is it time you review your social media policy?