Image via Wikipedia
nCircle came out with a survey that showed the majority of workplaces do not have any policy at all regarding Facebook usage in the workplace. Andrew Storms, one of my friends at nCircle says that sites such as Facebook being so popular increase the chances that a worker may put confidential or company intellectual property up on the site and in doing so make it public.
OK, I don’t disagree with Andrew, but I think whether the employee is at home or in the office, the risk is nearly the same. So unless you are going to ban Facebook at home too, what are you guarding against.
In the article by SC Magazine on this a Forrester spokesperson also talks about potential security threats by 3rd party apps on Facebook and a loss of productivity by workers using it during working hours. But as the article points out, a workplace ban on sites such as Facebook could deter young workers from joining the firm. Somehow limiting access may be best.
I disagree. I think employers have to make lemonade out of these lemons. You are not going to filter out Facebook usage. That train has left the station. You need to educate your workforce on what the pitfalls can be and how to stay away from them. I think Facebook and similar sites can be used as a powerful tool for marketing and messaging. I think most companies have not yet figured out how to leverage Facebook, Twitter, etc. for the powerful marketing and other advantages they can offer. Companies that do figure out how to use these type of sites for the positive and do a good job of educating their workers on how to harness it will reap the benefits. Companies that simply try to avoid these sites and don’t let employees use them will go the way of the dinosaurs.