A lot of companies are now present on social media channels, particularly Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin.
Some larger companies have a dedicated social media manager, in others the marketing team will send updates and engage with the community and in smaller businesses the managing director or one of the regular employees might tweet, update and talk to customers online instead.
However, it’s not just your company’s social media presence you need to consider, but what your other employees are saying on their personal online channels, even if they have nothing to do with the way your company engages online.
You can have all of your social media channels up to date, you can be engaging with potential customers and you can be building a following. However, if one of your employees tweets that your company isn’t good to work for, or they feel really hungover and they’re trying to do their job but feel so tired, then it’s going to reflect badly on you.
The key thing to remember is there’s nothing to be worried about. It’s good if your employees are using social media, you just need to make sure you have a policy in place and everyone understands it.
So, you need to put a short policy in place that you can easily write into a contract to tell your employees what you expect from them when they go online during office hours as well as outside office hours.
Maybe you could suggest that they make their Facebook profiles private, so if they want to vent about things it can be done only amongst their close friends. Maybe you could suggest that what they write online may be taken into account when it comes to reviews and the disciplinary process. There’s no definite answer to all of this, you just need to make it clear as soon as someone starts working for you. That way, if they write something negative about your company in a public space it can be dealt with accordingly.
Remember not to get worried, just make things clear and tell your employees they represent your company online as well as offline and you shouldn’t have any problems.
If you want to talk to us about social media guidelines, whether it’s for your company as a whole or just your employees then get in touch today and we can advise you on the right approach to take for your business.
[Image via Nasa Goddard’s Flickr]