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Social Media & HR: Friend or Foe Highlights


For those of you that missed the webinar by G&A Partners’ HR Advisors Christy Outler and Rebecca Regard, we have developed this post as a reference.

As for most of the world, America has seen a huge increase in social media interaction. We use Facebook to show friends and family pictures of our recent vacation or our kids’ recital, it’s become a medium for sharing, which also has become a concern of Human Resources as information is shared amongst coworkers and the public.

What makes social media your friend?

  • It helps promote your company, for instance, G&A Partners’ Facebook page provides an area of which content sharing and users can interact with one another
  • It increases your company’s results when searched, allowing it to show up in Google searches more often
  • Increases networking capabilities amongst coworkers and employees
  • It’s free!
  • Enhances recruiting options

Recruiting? How on Earth can Linkedin, Facebook or Twitter be used for recruiting? Well, it allows an HR representative to get an overview of a candidate and possibly view their skills and education background prior to scheduling an actual interview.

Here’s a list of the top social media sites used for recruitment:

  1. Linkedin 95%
  2. Facebook 58%
  3. Twitter 42%
  4. Professional or association social networking site 23%

How’s is social media bad?

In regards to the workplace, social media can blur the lines between coworkers and open
possibilities for harassment and discrimination. For instance, what happens if a coworker comments on another coworker’s bikini picture from her trip to the Bahamas? How do you go about dealing with that?

The answer lies within the company and how it handles harassment, discrimination or social media misuse. Another problem with social media is that your employees’ behavior online can impact the public view of your company.

It’s important to outline a social media policy so that your employees understand the boundaries of which they can’t trespass. Social media can do wonders for brand awareness but remember, an upset customer will tell 15 – 20 people of their bad customer experience.

Social Media Plan of action?

  • Create: The social media policy for your company needs to protect you from the release of confidential information or crude posts by your employees
  • Specify: Make sure your policy is specific to social media and not just internet use, nearly 65% of companies do not currently have a social media policy in place.
  • Consult: Get advice from a legal counsel and understand you and your employees’ rights in the social media world.
  • Training: Spend some time to educate your employees on the importance of the policy and make sure they have signed it.

Overall, social media can be a useful tool and in this day and age, it can bring in prospective customers. If not regulated correctly, it can have side effects, harming a brand and releasing negative publicity.

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