Let's get social

I went to a really engaging presentation from Massers Ltd today, delivered by Emma Tegerdine on the subject of the risks presented to businesses from the use of Social Media by staff. The over-riding thought that I was left with was a feeling of fighting against a Tsunami of change.

The world has changed and with over a billion Facebook users out there, it has become the default communication means for many people, particularly the young. This brings with it a very blurred boundary between work and home life and this, coupled with the lack of thought that accompanies many public online postings can lead to a serious risk of detriment to the company.

Quite rightly, the first line of defence should be a well drafted social media and IT policy. However, what set me thinking was the quite often prohibitive nature of some of these policies - don't use Facebook at work, no tweeting about your job etc. Whilst this may make the employee ultimately easier to dismiss following a breach of these policies, that is not what they are there for. With such a shift in culture, society and communications it seems a more "progressive" solution needs to be sought. Acknowledging that the world has changed and educating staff members to ensure that their postings are both considered and positive.

Naturally, even the best drafted posts can be mis-interpreted and result in complaints or legal action. Action against staff may need to be enforced and may result in claims made by disgruntled staff members.

Wherever there is uncertainty, there is risk. Wherever there is risk an insured solution can be put into place to ensure that the financial future of your business is not threatened.