Half of executives ignore social media policies

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Nov 14, 2017
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Employers also admitted to looking at applicants’ social media accounts without telling them

Dado Ruvic/Reuters

Only half of British employers “rigorously enforce” their internal social media policies, with a small minority taking disciplinary action against employees for breaches, researchers disclosed yesterday.

Slightly less than 53 per cent of senior executives at UK businesses said that they paid attention to whether their workforce was adhering to policies. And only 14 per cent of the nearly 100 companies surveyed said that they had bothered to discipline any employee after a breach of their policy.

Employers also confirmed how important online research is considered when businesses are recruiting. Nearly 80 per cent said that they had conducted online searches about job applicants. Nearly 66 of the senior executives acknowledged that they did not inform applicants that they were looking at the their social media sites.

Alex Denny, head of the London office of the US law firm Faegre Baker Daniels, which produced the report, said there were significant “pitfalls” in social media for employers. “Monitoring employees’ accounts is becoming an increasingly contentious issue,” he said, “especially as we begin to see the rise of wearable technology in the workplace. A robust social media policy and impact assessment plus restrictive covenants in contracts will help employers manage the risks associated with social media use.”

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