The Importance of having a social media policy

The Importance of having a social media policy

22 August 2017

It seems there is no getting away from it, social media is prolific. An excellent tool for all businesses but what happens if a disgruntled employee posts derogatory remarks about the company or more likely an employee lists on their profile their connection to the business and has a wild time posting “inappropriate to the business” pictures to their profile. What happens if an employee spends more company time chatting to friends on social media rather than on their work? Where do you stand, what can you do? Not a lot if you don’t have a social media policy in force.

The Importance of having a social media policy

Talking about social media in the workplace ACAS state:

“Some estimates report that misuse of the internet and social media by workers costs Britain’s economy billions of pounds every year and add that many employers are already grappling with issues like time theft, defamation, cyber bullying, freedom of speech and the invasion of privacy.”

Don’t get us wrong, we are not against social media, when used well it can be huge benefit to a business and employees make excellent brand ambassadors. Just like all HR policies and procedures a social media policy is there in case the worst happens. Something you hope to never enforce, but there to protect the business and other employees should you encounter issues.

What should be in your social media policy?

A good question and one often asked. First the policy should set out exactly what is and what isn’t acceptable behaviour regarding social networking sites. Whether it is permitted on work time (including breaks), using work equipment, what can be said about the business, what cannot be said. With this policy, you are walking a fine line between protecting the business and allowing freedom of speech.

If an employee is representing the business online you will need clear guidelines of what can be disclosed, it is sensible to include an approval process prior to publishing permission being granted. Once a policy has been developed it is important this is agreed with each employee and advice should be given so that employees know how to keep their account private if they wish. As with all elements of HR policies, a clear disciplinary procedure will need to be included and other policies may need updating to include Cyber Bullying.

If you would like a consultation to chat about a suitable social media policy for your business – get it solved! Contact solved HR on 07714 790024 or email