Not letting people Tweet is a big turn-off

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Whether an employer allows staff to access social media at work or not, may affect a candidate’s decision regarding accepting a job offer with them. This is the result of a survey that was recently conducted by Hays recruitment firm, involving 260 respondents – both employers and candidates.

More specifically, the survey showed that one in four candidates would refuse a job offer if they weren’t going to have reasonable access to sites like Facebook at work. In addition, the results revealed that two thirds of employees currently access social media at work for personal reasons: almost a quarter of these did so daily, while another 42.1% did so occasionally.

These findings suggest that employees expect there to be some leeway when it comes to accessing social media at work, and employers tend to agree. Currently, more than three quarters (79.7%) of employers who responded to the survey allow their employees some access to social media while they are at work.

When asked, ‘Do you allow employees to access social media at work?’, around one third (32.8%) said that they did, and almost half (46.9%) said they allowed limited access.

However, the fact that 21.1% of employees said that they did not have a clear understanding of how to represent their organisation on social media could be cause for concern. “It is important to have a social media policy covering how social media is used for work-related matters, the use of it for personal matters at work, and what employees can and cannot say about your organisation in the social media world,” Jason Walker, managing director of Hays New Zealand, said.

Hays' tips for social media policies:

  • Spell out how social media should be used during work hours and if it will be monitored
  • Make it clear that company email accounts should not be used to sign up for social media sites used for personal reasons
  • You can request that work-related complaints are brought to the attention of the appropriate internal person, rather than made via social media
  • Explain how misuse of social media can be dealt with

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