Businesses worried that employees on social networks cost them with loss in productivity should be thankful for a new study. A British think tank has found that social networking actually helps businesses and employees in getting more customers.
We have read several reports where businesses have banned social networks like Facebook, MySpace, Linked-In, Twitter, YouTube and other networks in their workplace, but that has encouraged their employees only to find alternate ways of accessing them.
Demos, a UK-based think tank did a comprehensive study and have found that social networking helps within the organization and also between organizations and clients.
Peter Bradwell and Richard Reeves have published a 92-page report titled “Network Citizens: Power and Responsibility at Work”, a must-read document for every business owners and employees. It is available free here (PDF) at this link.
They say companies that try to enforce a ban on Facebook and YouTube is impossible for them to implement just like trying to ban gossips within the company. If they use one technology to ban it, there is another technology to overturn this ban.
Just like phoning, e-mailing clients, social networking provides another layer of interaction and, in some cases, a more effective one.
There is always a plus and a negative but if used wisely social networking can be healthy for businesses, according to Bradwell and Reeves.
Companies that ban social networking sites at their workplace should read this document and can see for themselves how productive they can become if done properly.