It is true that most companies still hesitate when it comes to providing social media access to their employees. Reasons can be many, from negligence at work to delayed deadlines and simply using social media to find another job to mingling with dear ones.
While there are ample reasons for a company to bar employees from using social media, there are few legit reasons a company should allow its employees use social media.
Brand building is one such reason. Yes, it is not the sole responsibility of a company’s marketing team when it comes to brand building, since its employees too are equally responsible for the same. You can engage your employees in brand building exercises for an honest portrayal of your brand.
Though there will always be a few ones, who would seize this opportunity to pursue their personal agenda, but it is one risk that a company has to take. Practically everyone has social media access on their cellphones and hence, alienating them from digital media is not even in question.
One among the many benefits of including employees in your brand building agenda is the reach you will achieve. When only a small segment of the company is involved in marketing, the reach is limited. On the other hand, if more and more people start sharing, tweeting, mentioning and talking about your company and your initiatives, it is sure to reach a wider audience base. Talk about promoting your company’s CSR activities on the right foot. This also has a positive effect on your customers and vendors, who feel proud to be associated with your brand thus, improving loyalty.
Next, your employees can be your advocate on social media platforms engaging with your customers wherever possible to not only help them with their queries, but also can avert an imminent PR crisis. Most importantly, this comes with little to no investment.
To ensure that your employees do not indulge in social media abuse at work, it is advisable to conduct regular workshops to explain the pros of social media plus making the employees aware that their social media activities are monitored when at work.
This can also give you a chance to discuss with your employees any new campaigns to promote or ideas. You could also have someone other than marketing and sales department lead your campaigns from time to time. This not only helps in uprooting fresh ideas, but also make the employees feel a part of the family.
Remember the key is to having robust policies, regular workshops and tracking the usage and setting a limit.
Social media usage at workplace should be allowed or not? The answer still lies with your past experiences. The conclusion of this debate is not as easy as it seems to. The answer totally lies under management and goals of any company. It may even vary from time to time. However, monitoring the usage is the key.
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