ACAS’ social networking guidance

ACAS – the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service, who you’ve probably heard of on news reports about negotiations between employers and unions – have published some guidance for employers on how to manage staff use of these sites at work.

Smart phones, internet, tweeting, blogging – we have accepted all of these innovations, and many more, as part of our working lives, helping us to work more flexibly, stay in touch for longer and respond to each other more quickly.

But is it all good news? 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.

So how should employers respond to the challenges posed by social networking tools at work?

New research from the Institute for Employment Studies, commissioned by Acas, advises employers to:

  • draw up a policy on social networking
  • treat ‘electronic behaviour’ in the same way you would treat ‘non-electronic behaviour’
  • react reasonably to issues around social networking by asking ‘what is the likely impact on the organisation?’

Worth checking out.

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Published by

Dave Briggs

I'm Head of Digital and Design at Adur and Worthing Councils.