Added Social Media Rules and Regs to Your Employee Handbook Yet?

Just read a somewhat amusing, but at the same time informative, article over at Mashable on the topic of people being fired thanks to idiotic postings on Facebook and other social media sites. The article suggests nearly 10% of U.S. companies have fired at least one employee due to misuse of social media.

This issue brings up a lot of pertinent questions. Are the right employees using social media at work? Are the ones using it doing so in a work-related manner? How easy is it to regulate, or even set the boundaries for social media use at work?

None of these are new questions. But as social media becomes a preferred communication/collaboration and yes, even a sales, marketing and support channel for businesses, some rules and regulations need to apply.

One thing is clear – not all businesses will see eye to eye on do’s and don’ts of social media. Some more youth-oriented companies will foster more Facebook and Twitter-based outreach and marketing, while more traditional B2B companies might have more stringent regulations.

We are truly in a new age of marketing and selling to prospects and customers, as well as learning new ways to engage for support and service. The rules may not be as simple as “no personal calls on company time” but companies must set up proper use guidelines…

One thought on “Added Social Media Rules and Regs to Your Employee Handbook Yet?

  1. The SAP Community Network – which is a group of various communities serving different segments of SAP’s customers, partners, influencers, and others (such as developers and other IT people, business process experts, business intelligence analysts, even university students and professors, and more) – prompted SAP (the world’s largest business applications software company) to introduce “social media guidelines” for employees earlier this year. This set of guidelines, which was approved by our Board, helped SAP clarify its intent for employee participation in social media such as facebook, twitter, LinkedIn, our own SAP Community Network (SCN), etc. It helps SAP keep up-to-date with social media’s changes in the marketplace of ideas and information (and commerce). It gave employees guidance and clarification, which some were requesting. It makes “official” the permission to participate actively and gives guidance on how to do so appropriately, which encourages participation in social media channels. You can see SAP’s employee guidelines (we published them publicly in case others want to consider them “best practices” and use / adopt something similar for their own companies) and commentary about the guidelines by an independent third-party analyst / blogger here:

    Mark Yolton

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